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Weekly Football Phrase: Schoolboy Error

On this week’s English for football phrase, languagecaster brings you the expression ‘schoolboy error‘. Find out more about this phrase by reading the transcript below and listening to the audio. You can also find many more examples of soccer vocabulary by going to our football cliches page here and our huge football glossary here. This post also features in our podcast show, along with a main report and our weekly predictions.

Schoolboy Error

This week’s English for football phrase is the expression schoolboy error which is used to describe a very bad mistake committed by a player during a game. The mistake is so basic and unexpected that it is hard to believe that a professional player could do such a thing – it is a mistake that only someone with a limited knowledge of the game would make – a schoolboy. A similar expression is ‘rookie mistake’ which is more common in the US. Some typical examples of schoolboy errors include not playing to the whistle, not facing a free kick or failing to clear the ball when under pressure. These are basics of the game and failing to do them may result in a team conceding a goal or even losing a game. Schoolboy error.

Find more football phrases by visiting our huge glossary page, where you can find hundreds of words, phrases and cliches connected to the world of football. If you have any suggestions or questions then you can contact us at

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

Welcome to the website that helps students interested in football improve their English language skills. Soccer fans can enhance these skills with lots of free language resources: a weekly podcast, football phrases, explanations of football vocabulary, football cliches, worksheets, quizzes and much more at

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