This week’s football phrase for English is the verbal phrase ‘to stake a claim‘. This phrase is made up of the noun ‘stake‘ and the verb ‘to claim‘. A stake is a piece of wood that is used to mark out an area of land. The word can also be used as a verb, so if you have staked out some land, you say it is yours. To claim also means to say something is yours, or that you deserve something. Combined as ‘to stake a claim‘, this phrase is used in football to describe a player, usually not a regular first team player, that has played so well that they deserve to be in the first team, they stake a claim to a place in the team. This week, Liverpool face Napoli and Hodgson, the manager, is resting his big name players like Torres and Gerrard. The manager said it was a chance for other players to stake a claim for a regular position. To stake a claim.