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Soccer Jargon - FIFA World Cup

Listen to the words and phrases below, record your own version, and compare your recording with the original.


Booked is when a player is deemed to have contravened the rules so his name and number are noted by the referee.


Caution is a warning by the referee for an offense committed during the match. This is not as serious as a "booking".

Centre Spot 

Centre Spot is a spot marked in the centre of the halfway line from where the kick-off takes place.

Corner flags

Corner flags are the flags placed in the four corners of the pitch from where corner kicks are taken.

Corner kick 

A corner kick is awarded to the attacking team when the ball passes over the defender's goal line, having last been played by a defender.


Cross is when a player kicks the ball from a position near the touchline into midfield, usually the penalty or goal area.

Direct free kick 

Direct free kick is a kick given by the referee from which a goal can be scored directly by the player taking the kick.

Extra time 

When a definite result is required (usually in a knock-out competition) and the score is level at the end of normal time i.e. 90 minutes, an extra 30 minutes is played i.e. 15 minutes each way is played


Foul is an infringement of the rules


Penalty is the result of any foul which would normally lead to a direct free-kick that is committed by a team inside their own penalty area.

4-4-2 formation 

Traditionally, teams play in a 4-4-2 formation - that is four defenders, four midfielders and two strikers.

4-4-1-1 formation 

The 4-4-1-1 formation is a simple variation of 4-4-2 in which the second attacker plays just behind the main striker but ahead of the midfield.


Even after a foul, a ref may allow play to continue sometimes. He will look to see if the team that would have been awarded the free-kick has an advantage in playing on. To signal that he is waving play on, he will extend both arms out in front of his body. 


The sweeper is a defensive player positioned between the fullbacks and the goalkeeper.  Intended to roam freely and “sweep up” the ball across the field, this player usually acts as the on-field coach directing the defense and allows the fullbacks to push forward to aid the offense.


The striker is an offensive player, usually the center forward, known to have a strong shot. Quite often the player to take the most shots on goal.

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