Each week the languagecaster team will explain a football phrase or cliche for learners of English who love the sport. On this week’s show we introduce the phrase ‘a sweet strike’. Click on the link below to learn about the word or phrase, while you can also read the transcript. You can also find many more examples by going to our football cliches here and our huge football glossary here.

Listen here: A sweet strike

This week’s football phrase is a sweet strike. To strike is a verb, which means to hit, and in football to kick or to shoot, and in this phrase strike is used as a noun. The adjective sweet means very good, beautiful or great, and often is used when the player hits the ball in the perfect place. In combination, a sweet strike means a fantastic shot, perhaps a volley that is beautifully timed, an unstoppable piledriver, or a great free kick. The phrase can also be used with strike as a verb, as in, he struck the ball sweetly. This weekend, Gareth Bale scored a goal against Manchester City with a sweet strike on the edge of the area, but it wasn’t enough to stop his side, Spurs, from losing. A sweet strike.

Check out our glossary of footballing phrases here. If you have any suggestions, contact us at admin@languagecaster.com
Learn English Through Football
Learn English Through Football
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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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  • What does “blood” mean actually mean in football? And also in this context, does the verb “strike” mean to shoot?

    CHANCE! United smell a bit of blood here! They come forward again and Williams swings a cross into the box which Fernandes rises to meet, but can only put well wide having overrun the ball a bit.

    GOAL! First blood to Manchester United! The hosts strike from the free kick which the Man City players were contesting, although it is a terrible and uncharacteristic error from Ederson which costs them too.

    • Hello Dwi,
      Yes a strike can mean a shot but here it means score.

      The phrase ‘first blood’ means to strike or score first – I think this phrase comes from boxing or fighting.

      If a team ‘smells blood’ it means that they feel the opposition are weak and there is a chance to score or win the game.

      I hope that helps


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