On this football language podcast for learners of English, we look back at the second round of the 2010 World Cup – and what an amazing four days it has been. On today’s podcast we take a look back at those 8 games, which had a little bit of everything from penalty shootouts to disputed goals, red cards and some wonder strikes. You can read the transcript for this podcast below, while you can also check out our glossary of footballing phrases here and visit our site to access all our previous posts and podcasts – we have lots of World Cup resources too. If you have any suggestions or questions then you can contact us at admin@languagecaster.com.

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The second round of the World Cup is now over and what an amazing four days it has been. On today’s podcast we take a look back at those 8 games, which had a little bit of everything from penalty shootouts to disputed goals, red cards, wonder strikes, as well as lots of tears of joy and sadness.

Uruguay 2- 1 South Korea

In a rain-drenched Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Uruguay beat South Korea 2-1 thanks to two well-taken goals by top striker Luis Suárez, his second in particular a real beauty which means Uruguay continue their successful run and sees them reach the quarter-finals of the World Cup for the first time since 1970. The Koreans had their chances but failed to find a way past the impressive Uruguayan defence – one that had not conceded a goal in this tournament – until Lee Chung-Yong’s equaliser half way through the second half. The Asian side pressed for a winner but it was Suarez who sealed the victory with a delightful curling shot in the 80th minute.

Ghana 2- 1 (aet) USA

A real topsy-turvy game saw Ghana make it to the quarter-finals for the first time in their history and to become only the third side from Africa to make it that far. The Black Stars deserved it for their extra-time performance when they took the game to the States who had seemed favourites to win after their strong second-half showing had earned them an equaliser from their captain Landon Donovan. This goal had cancelled out Boateng’s early strike for Ghana but rather than going on to win the game, it was the Africans who finished stronger with their top scorer Asamoah Gyan getting the winner in extra time.

Germany 4-1 England

Without a doubt Germany deserved this victory but to tell the truth they didn’t really have to work that hard for it. Seeing England have a perfectly good goal ruled out was one piece of extremely good luck but England’s inability to maintain possession, their tactical naivity and poor performances from top players meant that it was a relatively easy victory for the young German side. Klose out-muscled the defence for the first, Podolski rammed home the second while Thomas Mueller scored two goals on the counter-attack early in the second half to record England’s biggest ever World Cup defeat. Upson scored what proved to be a consolation goal while Lampard was unfortunate in having his goal chalked off when everyone else watching knew that it was in. A thrashing.

Argentina 3-1 Mexico

Diego Maradona’s side keep rolling on and they fully deserved this victory over a Mexican side who yet again were let down by poor finishing after some good build-up play. However, they can also point to bad refereeing decisions as it was clear to everyone that Carlos Tevez’ opening goal was well offside. Nothing wrong with Tevez’ second and his side’s third when he slammed home a rocket from outside the box. Hernandez scored a late consolation for Mexico but yet again they have fallen at the second round to their southern neighbours. A mouth-watering tie lies ahead between Argentina and Germany in a repeat of the quarter-final of 4 years ago.

Holland 2-1 Slovakia

Many felt that the Slovaks had peaked in their amazing victory over Italy in the final group match and so it proved to be as the Dutch ran out comfortable winners. Arjen Robben’s return from injury has given the Dutch a huge lift and he scored his second goal of the tournament midway through the first half before Wesley Sneijder sealed the victory late in the second. The Slovaks did get a late consolation goal when Vittek netted his fourth goal of the tournament but it proved too late and the Dutch side maintained their 100% record to qualify for the last 8.

Brazil 3-0 Chile

Chile had been many people’s dark horses and had won many friends with their high-paced attacking style of play but they were unable to reproduce it against their South American neighbours who dominated from the word go. Strong in defence and brilliant on the counter attack the Brazilians were formidable and goals from Juan, Luis Fabiano – his third of the tournament, and a resurgent Robinho ensured another victory over Chile. Dunga is still under pressure of course, nothing short of winning a sixth trophy is what the fans want from him and the Seleção but on this form there are few who would bet against him doing it.

Paraguay 0-0 Japan (Paraguay 5-3 on pens)

Neither side had ever reached the quarter-finals of the World Cup before and on this performance it is easy to see why. Easily one of the worst games of this tournament it seemed that neither side was capable of keeping the ball for more than one or two touches, with Japan in particular showing little in attack. Their defender Komano missed his penalty in the shoot out while Paraguay scored all of theirs to send the South Americans through and the Japanese to return home with regret because they will never get a better chance of making the last 8.

Spain 1-0 Portugal

Another team returning home with regret is Portugal after they succumbed to their Iberian neighbours and European Champions Spain 1-0 last night. The Portuguese simply wished to shut-up-shop against the Spanish and when they went behind midway through the second half they could find no way back into the game. Their captain and star striker Ronaldo barely got a kick in the second half and had to watch on in admiration as Spain’s David Villa yet again showed that he is one of the best strikers in the world with his 4th goal of the tournament. Spain move on.


  • rain-drenched: It had been raining heavily all day; full of rain
  • a real beauty : A beautiful goal
  • conceded a goal: Not allowed a goal to go in against them; had maintained 3 clean sheets up until then
  • equaliser: A goal to tie the game, e.g. 1-1
  • aet: After Extra Time
  • topsy-turvy: A game that is difficult to predict as it is constantly changing; one minute the Americans were on top then the Ghanaians
  • Black Stars Nickname of the Ghana football team
  • cancelled out: Another verb to describe an equaliser
  • strike: Here it means a goal
  • goal ruled out: A disallowed goal, it was not a goal
  • tactical naivity: The england team did not understand tactics very well
  • out-muscled: He was stronger than the England player
  • rammed home: He smashed home the goal, he scored with a very strong shot
  • counter-attack : An attack that starts from the defence and is very speedy
  • chalked off: Disallowed goal, ruled out
  • build-up play: The team passed the ball well before scoring
  • slammed home a rocket : He scored a great goal (with a lot of power)
  • box: The penalty area
  • A mouth-watering tie: A game that everyone is looking forward to
  • had peaked: Had played their best, cannot play any better
  • ran out comfortable winners: Easily won
  • sealed the victory: Completed the victory
  • netted his fourth goal : Scored his 4th goal
  • high-paced: Play in a quick manner
  • formidable : Very good and very strong
  • the Seleção : Nickname for the Brazilian football team
  • the shoot out: The penalty shoot-out at the end of extra time to decide the winner
  • succumbed to: Lost to
  • their Iberian neighbours: Spain
  • to shut-up-shop : Very defensive
  • barely got a kick : Hardly kicked the ball, was not involved in the game

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PodcastEpisode 81