This week, introduces the English for football phrase ‘It’s a lottery‘. You can understand more about this phrase by reading the transcript below. You can also find many more examples of soccer vocabulary by going to our football cliches page here and our huge football glossary here.

It’s a lottery mp3 | It’s a lottery pdf

Damian: On this week’s English for football, we’re going to focus on two phrases – two clichés actually – which can be applied to any real game, particularly games towards the end of the season where people don’t really know which side is going to win so…

Damon: It’s a lottery and it’s anyone’s game. Damian: Yeah, now Damon what does it’s a lottery mean? Damon: Well of course a lottery is a competition where you buy a ticket, which is drawn out from many thousands to decide a winner. So the chances of winning are very low, but also the most important thing is nobody can tell who will win. It’s a lottery means no-one knows the result.

Damian: Yeah and very very similar to that where nobody knows the result, nobody knows which team is going to win, we can apply the phrase it’s anybody’s game. Now this is a real standard footballing cliché, which you’ll hear quite often from television commentators and footballers themselves, so Damon, this week a big relegation game between Sheffield United and Wigan. What do you think?

Damon: I think it’s anyone’s game. And in the Championship we’ve got four teams in the play-offs. What do you think?

Damian: Oh, it’s a lottery.

Check out our glossary of footballing phrases here and if you have any suggestions, contact us at

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    Learn English Through FootballWelcome to the website that helps students interested in football improve their English language skills. Football fans can practise with lots of free language resources, including football-language podcasts and our huge football-language glossary.

    Football ClichesEpisode 14
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