There are many people, words, and expressions connected to the beautiful game and here are some of them to help you understand and speak about football in more detail. 


People & Positions


Goalkeeper also know just as a keeper or goalie - A famous goal keeper is Gianluigi Buffon

Left backA famous left back is Roberto Carlos

Right backA famous right back is Dani Alves

Centre back also know as central defender  - A famous centre back is John Terry

Left/right wing also known as a winger or lefl/right-mid(field) - A famous winger is Arjen Robben 

Centre-mid also known as a central midfielder - A famous right winger is Frank Lampard

Defensive midfielder - A famous defensive midfielder is Patrick Vieira 

Player-maker - A famous play-maker is Cristano Ronaldo 

Striker also known as a forward A famous striker is Alan Shearer 

the referee also known as the ref - A famous referee is Pierluigi Collina

The 4th official the guy who helps the referee off the pitch

The linesmanthe guy responsible for deciding offsides, throwings, and corners

The chairmanthe owner of a football club

The board - a group of people who own small parts of a football club

The manager also known as the head coach - the boss of the team

The assistant managerthe helper to the manager 

The captain - the manager of the players on the pitch

The physiothe guy who runs on to help when a player is in pain

The kitman - the guy who is responsible for making sure all the players have the right kit and equipment

Scouts the guys who watch players and teams and report back with detailed information 

The youth coachthe guy who is responsible for the young players at a club

The commentatorthe guy on the TV and radio who tells us what's happening in a game

The fansthe people who who support a team

The punditsthe people, usually former footballers talking about football on TV and radio shows

The agent a person who negotiates and manages a player

Ball boyschildren around the pitch though throw get loose balls

A streaker - a person who runs onto the football pitch with no clothes on 




To kick You KICK the ball -

To pass You PASS the ball to another player. Example: John passes to Bob

To tackle You TACKLE when the other team has the ball Example: John tackled Bob and now John has the ball

To score - You SCORE when the ball goes over the goal line: Example: I scored two goals today

To book someone - this is what the referee does when he gives a red or yellow card

To shoot You SHOOT when you think you can score and kick the ball at the goal Example: John only shoots when he is near the goal

To save - You SAVE the ball with your hand(s) - sometimes legs -  when you stop the ball going in the goal. Keepers do this

To dribble - You DRIBBLE when you run with the ball at your feet

To mark (s/o)you MARK someone when you stay with the player and try to stop them

To volley You VOLLEY the ball when you kick it when it's in the air.

To half-volleyYou HALF-VOLLEY the ball when you kick it after it touches the ground once

To sprint You SPRINT when you run very fast for a short time

To block - You BLOCK the ball when you use your body to stop the ball

To controlYou CONTROL the ball when you use your body to stop the ball and you have full control over it. Every time you receive a pass you have to control the ball

To handball - You HANDBALL the ball when you touch it with your hands. 

To headYou HEAD the ball when it is in the air

To foul - You FOUL when you don't get the ball and get the player

To kick off you KICK OFF when you start a game, at half-time, and when there game restarts because of a goal

To take a corner/throw/a penalty - you TAKE these 

To come on/off you COME OFF/ON when a player leaves the pitch for another player

The Game 


Free-kick - when a player FOULS you, you get a free-kick

Half-time - the end of the first 45 minutes

Full-timethe end of the 90 minutes

Extra time / added time / injury time - the added minutes to the game after 90 minutes

A booking / to get booked - when a player fouls another player badly and they get a yellow card

To be sent offif you get booked twice, or foul very badly you get sent off - a red card

To be cautioned - this is when the referee warns you

To dive - this is when the player goes to the ground without being fouled, but acting like he was

On the benchthese are the players who are not in the starting eleven

To equalise - when you are losing and you score. Example: 1-0 and the 1-1 

The starting eleventhe 11 chosen players to start the game 

A substitute also known as a sub a player who comes off the bench to replace another player

A throw in  - this is when the ball goes off the pitch and a player throws it back on

A corner - this is when the ball goes off the pitch behind the goal and is touched last by a player from the other team

Man on! - the thing you shout when there is someone coming to the person with the ball

A stretcher - this is what they use to carry a player off if he is hurt badly and can't walk

To be suspended - a player who can't play because is was sent off in a previous game

A penalty - when a player FOULS you in the 18 yard box you get a penalty 

Hand-ballwhen you touch the ball with your hand

A goalwhen you 'score'

A wall this is a line of players who try to block a freekick  

The score this is how many goals each team has scored: Example 2-1

An own goalwhen a player from the same team scores against their own goalkeeper 

Over the bar when you miss the target and it goes over 

Wide when you miss the target and it goes left or wide of the goal

To beat another team - this is when you 'win' the other team

To go out for a cornerwhen a player from the other team  hits the ball and it goes behind the goal

To go out for a throwing when a player from the other team  hits the ball and it goes out of play

To hit the (cross) barwhen the ball hits the bar above the goalkeeper

To hit the post when the ball hits the bar on the left and right side of the goalkeeper

To clear it off the linewhen a player kicks the ball off the goal line and stops it going in

To miss a penaltywhen you take a penalty and don't score

To take a penalty - when you have a chance to score

To put it in the top/bottom cornerwhen the ball goes into the corner of the goal

Offside - read....

An injury / to be injuredwhen a place is hurt and has to come off

The changing room where the places get changed before the game, and alos at half-time

The League 


To get promotedwhen a team from a lower leagues goes to a higher league 

To get relegatedwhen a team from a higher league goes to a lower league 

To winwhen you 'beat' a team 

To drawwhen the score is the same level 0-0, 1-1, 2-2, etc

Goal differencewhen you add the goals scored and then take away the goals conceded 

Top/mid/bottom half of the tableteams in the higher, middle, and lower  half of the league

The league table - the list of teams in a league

The league leaders - the top team

Top of the league - when you're top

Bottom of the league - when you're bottom

A playoff/champions league/europa league position - a place in the league that means you will qualify for something

The Cup


To get knocked out (by) - when you lose to a team

To knock out someone - when you win and the other team is out of the competition 

To go throughyou go to the next round

The group stagethis is not a knock out and a little league

The knock out stage - this is when you lose and you are out of the competition

The last 16the last 16 teams

The quarter final the last 8 teams

The semi final the last 4 teams

The finalthe last 2 teams

The cup holders - the team who won the competition last year

Runners up - the team that loses in the final



The equipment 


Kit / stripthe this is what a team wears Including shirt, shorts, and socks

Football shirt / topjust the shirt. It's not called a t-shirt

Shin-pads  -  this is what you put under your socks to protect your shins

Bootswhat you wear on your feet 

Studs - these are at the botom of a boot

The captain's armbandwhat the captain wears on their arm

A headbandwhat players with longer hair sometimes wear on their head

Your club


The stadium -  the building where team plays

All-time record scorerthe player who has scored the most goals for the club

Most appearances - a player who has most times for a club

A (new) signing  - a new play to a club

A record signing - the most expensive player in history for the club

The fixtures - the list of games the club has to play

The results - the scores of a game

The transfer budget - how much a club has to spend on players

Rivals - your club's enemies 

The first team - the starting 11 

The youth team - the young players at your club

The chairman - the owner of a football club

The board - a group of people who own small parts of a football club

The manager - the boss of the team

The assistant manager - the helper to the manager 

The captain - the manager of the players on the pitch

The physio - the guy who runs on to help when a player is in pain

Scouts - the guys who watch players and teams and report back with detailed information 

The kitman - the guy responsible for making sure all the players have the right kit



Half way linethe line in the middle of the pitch

6 yard box - the box nearest the goal

The Penalty box / 18 yard boxthe box after the 6 yard box

The goalwhere the goal-keeper stands

The netconnected to the goal to stop the ball from hitting the crowd 

The center spotthe spot in the center circle

The center circlethe the big circle in the center of the pitch

The penalty spotthe spot where you take a penalty from

The touch line -  the line that runs on the side of the pitch

The half way life - the line that divides the pitch 

The corner flag -  the pole and flag in the corners of the pitch

The goal linethe line where the ball has to cross to score

The D  -  the D connected to the 18-yard-box

The dugout  -  the area where teams sit off the pitch

The goals


Overhead kick Here

Top corner -Here

bottom corner - Here

post and in -Here

Crossbar and in - Here

Diving heading - Here

a lob - Here

a volley - Here

a half-volley - Here

an own goal - Here

a tap-in Here


The lists will be continuly added to. Suggested are welcome.