Weekly Football Phrase: Carve Open

This week’s football phrase is to carve open which in football means to open up a defence

 to tee upThis week’s football phrase is to carve open which in football means to open up a defence.

  • Find out 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.
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(to) Carve open

This week’s football expression is the verbal phrase ‘to carve open’. We use this phrase in football to describe when an attacker easily breaks through a defence – they open up the defence. The verb to carve means to cut through something like meat for example, so when a player carves open a defence it means that the defence were unable to stop him or her, that the player easily went through the defence. To carve open.

  • Example: In the 2015 Copa del Rey final Lionel Messi carved open the Bilbao defence with an amazing run.
  • Example: The defence was carved open by a wonderful pass from Xavi.

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