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Learn English Through Football Podcast: Spurs v Man City

Do you love football? Do you want to improve your English skills? Well, this is the podcast for you! Languagecaster’s podcast has three sections: a review of some of the news in the footballing world – the good, the bad and the ugly; some football language explained in English for football; and our predictions battle – this week’s games discussed are Hull City versus Chelsea, West Ham hosting Middlesbrough, and the stand out fixture – Tottenham Hotspur taking on unbeaten Manchester City. You can read the transcript for the show in our post below (Damian = DF, Damon = DB).

Learn English Through Football Podcast: Spurs v Man City

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Transcript of the show

DB: You’re listening to languagecaster’s football podcast. Hiya! Welcome to this week’s show. My name is Damon and I’ll shortly be joined down the line by Damian from London. Oi Damian, are you there?

DF: Hi Damon. Yes I’m here in a very dark and wet London, actually it is lashing down here – very heavy rain indeed.  How are you and how is Tokyo?

DB: Very well, thank youand Tokyo has finally cooled off a bit and it could be a pleasant weekend over here. But enough about the weather, let’s get down to football and this week’s show. Shall we kick off with a quick review of the football this week?

Line up

DF: Let’s do that, and after the Good, the Bad and the Ugly news section, we’ll have some phrases from football from the news this week and we’ll finish off with our predictions.

DB: So, Damian, what was good in the world of football this week?


DF: Well, Leicester continued their good form in Europe with another victory in the Champions League: this time at home against Portuguese side Porto. That’s a really really good win isn’t it, Damon?

DB: yes it is!

DF: Manchester City’s women’s team wrapped up the Super League in England with a 2-0 defeat of Chelsea. But maybe the best news was that Roma’s Francesco Totti recently turned 40 years old but still playing for the club he loves and scoring last Sunday against Torino. 24 years at one club; 250 goals scored for that club; a captain for the club; and a hero for the supporters of the club. Happy birthday Francesco Totti!

DB: Happy birthday.

DF: How about bad Damon?


DB: Indeed, an amazing career and he’s still going strong. Now for bad, well it is getting pretty bad at Stamford Bridge, as Chelsea lost again against their big rivals in London and in the league, Arsenal. It looked all too easy for the Gunners (the nickname of Arsenal) as their slick passing carved a creaking defence open and went on to win the game 3-1. What is worrying for the Blues is there doesn’t seem to be any fight in the majority of their players. They really need something this weekend. Damian, do you think we’re going to see another season for Chelsea like last season, where they really struggled and looked like a mid-table team?


DF: Well, I hope so but I may be biased as a Tottenham fan! OK, well it’s bad for Chelsea but ugly for Sam Allardyce, the now ex-England manager. For those people who may not be familiar with the story, Sam Allardyce, who became manager of England after the poor performances of the national team in the European Championship, had to leave his post this week after revelations in a British newspaper. ‘Big Sam’ said some things about transfers, previous managers and ways of making money outside of his own job which meant that the FA – the main football organisation in England – decided to step in and ask him to leave the post that he had always wanted. His dream job has turned into a nightmare. He was in charge for only 67 days. Damon, do you have any sympathy for Allardyce? I mean, after all he was tricked by journalists to say those things.

DB: Sympathy? None at all.

Quiz question

DF: Well, the England manager’s job seems to be a poisoned chalice – no good comes to anyone in charge of the England team! Right, now before we look at some language from the football news this week, we have a question for you. In which game, playing for Italy, did Totti ‘panenka‘, that is chip the ball, over Holland’s Goalkeeper Van der Sar. We’ll have the answer at the end of the show. Damon! Stop googling!

DB: Yes, you are listening to and that was in Italian. If you’d like to send in a ‘you are listening to’ in your language, please do so and send your audio file with your name to!

DF: Yes indeed, and don’t forget that you can read the transcript for this week’s football language podcast by coming along to our site here at and opening up our latest podcast post.

DB: Next up we are going to take a look at some of the football language from the week.

Football Language – to track back

DF: Right, well I’m going to talk about the verb phrase to track back. This is used when an attacking player follows an opponent back and tries to tackle them, or to stop them getting the ball. It’s especially used for wingers, wide players, or midfielders – players who are not defenders but should do some defensive work. This week in the Champion’s League, Manchester City were hosted by Celtic, and Raheem Sterling, a front man for Man City did a good job tracking back, but unfortunately as he tried to block a shot from Moussa Dembele, the ball came off him and ended in an own goal. Damon, I know you play right back in your team, does your right-sided midfielder track back?

DB: Not as much as I want! I wish he’d track back more!

DF: I’m sure you’ll be able to tell him in the next game. Any other football language?

To press

DB: Yes, this verb has been increasingly popular over the last few years. To press. This is when a team without the ball rushes towards the opposing player who has the ball to try to make them make a mistake. Even if the opponent passes the ball, the next player is also pressed. Basically, it means the defending team hurries the opposition and tries to close down their options for passing or running with the ball. Celtic pressed high up the pitch in their game against Manchester City in the Champions League and earned an exciting 3-3 draw. Damian is your team, Tottenham, a pressing team?

DF: Most definitely! The manager of Tottenham, Mauricio Poccetinno, likes his players to press high up the pitch – to try and force the defenders into making a mistake – so they can win the ball back again. Not all teams can play this kind of style and not all teams can play this kind of style all the time as players will become exhausted very quickly.

Follow us

DB: Right, now before we turn to predictions, we’d just like to remind you that you can contact us at, leave a comment on our site at languagecaster,com. follow us on twitter, just search for @languagecaster, or drop by our Facebook page Learn English Through Football. Let us know if there is any football language that you would like us to explain or add to our huge football language glossary.

DF: And don’t forget our instagram account as well! If you have any football photos you’d like to share then come along to our facebook or instagram site. I have just posted some photos of my first ever pair of football boots so we are interested to see or hear about other people’s football boots.

DF: Alright Damon, it’s time for this week’s predictions.


DB: Yes it is. You can take us on in our online predictions competition. Come along to our site at, log in and you can see the predictions competition at the top of the menu bar on our website. It’s 3 points for a correct score and one for the right result. And Damian, you had a cracking week last week, didn’t you! Your top of the standings on a whopping 51 points, way ahead of myself, Aung Kyaw and Jose Levy!

DF: That’s right. I ended up winning the September predictions just ahead of yourself and Jose. We have a new monthly predictions competition starting this week so come along and take on the languagecaster team! We’re going to start with Everton v Crystal Palace, which of course took place last night. Now I went for 1-1 and you reckoned the Toffees (that’s Everton’s nickname) would win 2-1. Well, the score was 1-1 so another 3 points for me! So October has started well.

DB: It has indeed hasn’t it!. And the second game we are going to focus on is kicking off pretty soon, and it’s newly promoted Hull City hosting Chelsea. What’s your prediction, Damian?

DF: I’m going for a Chelsea away win 0-2. You?

DB: I’d like to see Hull get a good result. They’ve been battered their last two games out, but I think the London side Chelsea will grind out a 1-0 away win. What’s the third and last game? Is it a big one?

DF: Yes, this game takes place on Sunday between Tottenham and leaders Manchester City. I am a little worried about this one so I think I would take a draw – 2-2 for me. How about you?

DB: 1-1 for me. So that would be one point for your team and you’d be happy, wouldn’t you?

DF: Yes, I think so.

Quiz Answer

DF: Right it’s coming towards the end of the show, so let’s give the answer to our quiz question: In which game, playing for Italy, did Totti ‘panenka’, that is chip the ball, over Holland’s Goalkeeper Van der Sar. Damon, did Google help?

DB: Google did help! I’d forgotten it until I saw it again – Totti scored a cheeky panenka in the 2000 European Championship semi final against Holland! Glorious.

Good bye

DF: Glorious indeed! Let’s hope we see some glorious goals this week, especially from Tottenham against City! Enjoy all the football everyone – don’t forget to tell all your friends about the site – maybe leave us a review on i-tunes.

DB: Good luck Damian and catch everyone next week when we will be talking about World Cup qualifiers! Ta-rah!

DF: Bye!

Learn English Through Football
Learn English Through Football
Learn English Through Football

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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