Languagecaster Football Language Podcast: Cliches – Like a New Signing

In this short football language podcast we take a look at a football language cliche – ‘They’re like a new signing’. Check out our glossary of footballing phrases here and if you have any suggestions or questions then contact us at (DB=Damon)

Languagecaster Football Language Podcast: Cliches – Like a New Signing

Like a new signingDB: You’re listening to Hello everyone. Thanks for tuning in. This is Damon from the languagecaster team and you are listening to the show for all lovers of the great game of football and especially for those who also want to improve their English language skills. Remember to come along to the site at and you can then see the transcript for the show. And if you fancy supporting us, please do so by leaving a small donation via

Stinger: You are listening to (in Chinese).

DB: Yes, you are listening to and that message was in Chinese. Now, on today’s short podcast show, I’m going to talk about the football language cliche, ‘like a new signing‘.

Like a New Signing

The seasons in Europe are coming to a close and fans are beginning to think of next season and how their team will do. One topic is often new players. Who will the team buy? Who will they sign? When a player joins a new club, they sign a contract, so we often just say, for example, that a player has signed for AC Milan, or Chelsea have a new signing. The last phrase, uses the noun ‘a signing‘, which means a new player. This is part of the cliche we are looking at in this show.

The next part of the cliche we need to think about is ‘like’, like a new signing. This means, of course, the player isn’t really a new player, but they are like a new player. So, how do we use this cliche?

Coming back from injury

Fans and pundits use this phrase when they talk about a player who has been injured. Maybe the player has been injured for a long time. Now, the player is going to start again for the first team. And because the player has been out for a long time, it will feel fresh when they play again. They are almost like a stranger, so they feel like a new player, or a new signing.

Fans put a lot of hope in the player’s return and say, ‘it will be like a new signing‘. Of course, it isn’t a new signing, but the positive news is similar to when a team signs a new player and supporters can dream of success.

Embed from Getty Images

I’ve been thinking about my team, Liverpool, and their dreadful injuries this season, especially in defence. Virgil Van Dijk, one of their most important players, has been out injured since October 2020. Liverpool have also had a very bad season compared to the previous two or three years. I’m hoping Van Dijk makes a full recovery and he can return next season. If he does, it will be like a new signing!

You are listening to (in Urdu)

Good bye

DB: Right, that brings us to the end of this short football cliche podcast. If you want to know more about the language of transfers, just type in to your search engine – the language of transfers languagecaster – and you’ll find our posts, including a quiz!

Until next time, stay safe, enjoy the football, and ta-ra!

More on the language of transfers

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I was born and brought up near Chester in the north west of England. I have always loved playing and talking about sport, especially football!
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