Matchweek 27 & League Cup Final - Stalemate
Welcome to This Week from Premier Skills English, a weekly review of football action for learners of English from across the globe. In This Week, Jack and Rich talk about the latest action from the Premier League. They keep you up to date with our prediction competition and have lots of football English for you to learn.
Jack: Hello my name’s Jack and welcome to our weekly round-up section called ‘This Week’ on Premier Skills English.
Rich: Hi there. I’m Rich. We’ve got lots of interesting words and phrases to help you talk about football in English.
Jack: We want you to use and practise these phrases by interacting with Premier League fans from around the world in our comments section.
Rich: If you listen to us on Spotify or Apple Podcasts, you can leave your comments in the review section. We do read all the reviews and would love to hear from you.
Jack: You can find all our latest content on the Premier Skills English homepage or the Premier Skills-British Council Facebook page.
Rich: Let’s start with our headlines!
Jack: United hold Liverpool to Old Trafford stalemate.
Rich: Manchester United against Liverpool finished in a goalless draw. It was enough to send Liverpool back to the top of the table but are only one point in front of Manchester City. In a game of few chances, it looked like United had broken the deadlock near the end but the goal was disallowed for offside.
Jack: City clinch first trophy of the season.
Rich: Manchester City beat Chelsea on penalties to win the League Cup Final at Wembley and stay on course to become the first ever club to win the quadruple in the English game. City found it difficult to break down a stubborn Chelsea defence but eventually won 4-3 on penalties with Raheem Sterling kicking the winning penalty Jorginho and David Luiz missed for Chelsea.
Jack: Big home defeat for Leicester is the end of the road for Puel.
Rich: Leicester City lost 4-1 at home to Crystal Palace and the Leicester boss, Claude Puel, left his job soon after the match. It is the first time in nearly twenty years that Leicester have lost four matches in a row at home.
Jack: So, City have their first trophy of the season. Do you think they can win the quadruple?
Rich: I don’t know. Four trophies is a big ask. Maybe they can win the double or the triple but I’m not sure about the quadruple.
Jack: In our vocabulary alert, we look at some football English that we used in the headlines.
Rich: Our six words and phrases this week are: to hold (a team to a draw), a goalless draw, to break the deadlock, on penalties, to break down, and stalemate.
Jack: Our first phrase is to hold a team to a draw. This phrase is used when a team that is expected to lose doesn’t and draws against a team that was expected to win or play better than it did.
Rich: United held Liverpool to a draw.
Jack: The next phrase is to break down. In general English, this is often used when something stops working. Maybe your car breaks down or your washing machine.
Rich: In football, to break down or break down a team or a defence means to get passed or through the defence to create opportunities.
Jack: Liverpool and Manchester Utd found it difficult to break down the other team’s defence. There were not many chances in the match.
Rich: OK, the next phrase is a goalless draw. Both Manchester Utd against Liverpool and Chelsea against Manchester City finished in goalless draws. There were no goals - the matches were without goals. Easy.
Jack: The next phrase is to break the deadlock. It’s an idiom which means to end something where two sides have failed to agree on something for a long time.
Rich: There is often deadlock in political or business discussions.
Jack: In football deadlock is when a match has been goalless for a long time and then a player scores or breaks the deadlock.
Rich: This deadlock is also often described as stalemate. Stalemate is when neither side can win or get an advantage so no action is taken.
Jack: The term stalemate is used in chess when one player can’t move but their king is not being attacked.
Rich: In football, it describes a match where defences are on top and not much is happening.
Jack: The final phrase is on penalties. We use this phrase when one team wins a penalty-shootout. The important thing to remember is the preposition ‘on’.
Rich: We say Manchester City won on penalties.
Jack: Right, every week, we give out three Matchweek awards.
Rich: The awards are Player of the Week, Team of the Week and Goal of the Week.
Jack: In the comments section, you need to tell us if you agree with our choices.
Rich: Let’s start with Player of the Week. There were some strong performances in Matchweek 27.
Jack: Paul Pogba was good again for Manchester Utd, Ashley Barnes helped Burnley beat Tottenham and Wilfried Zaha scored twice for Palace against Leicester.
Rich: But, our Player of the Week is Watford’s Gerard Deulofeu. The ex-Barcelona player scored a hat-trick for Watford as they beat Cardiff 5-1 away from home. It was the first top-flight hat-trick for a Watford player since 1986!
Jack: What about our Team of the Week?
Rich: We could go for Watford for that 5-1 win or Palace for their 4-1 win away at Leicester but we’re going to go with Burnley for their 2-1 win against Tottenham. Burnley are unbeaten in eight matches - their longest unbeaten run since 1966!
Jack: And, finally Goal of the Week. This week I’m going to go for West Ham’s Issa Diop. The French players scored his first Premier League goal and it was a great header.
Jack: Every week, Rich predicts the result of one Premier League match and we want you to make your prediction, too.
Rich: We’re going to look ahead to matchweek 29 for our next prediction.
Jack: Oh yes, it’s the North London Derby.
Rich: That’s right. On Saturday, Tottenham in third place take on Arsenal in fourth. More than Premier League points are at stake in this North London clash. Fans of both teams will want to win this one but I don’t think either will go home happy because I’m predicting a draw. Tottenham loss against Burnley means they are probably out of the title race and Arsenal have been playing a bit better lately so I think it’ll finish one apiece. Final score: Tottenham 1-1 Arsenal.
Jack: You're right, we have been playing better and that’s why I’m going for a 2-1 win to Arsenal.
Rich: We’ll see. Make your predictions on the Premier Skills English website. You get one point if you predict the right result and three points if you predict the right score.
Jack: Right, that’s all we have time for. I hope you have enjoyed this football round-up. Join the discussion at the bottom of the page on the Premier Skills English website.
Rich: Bye for now and enjoy your football.
Cardiff 1-5 Watford
West Ham 3-1 Fulham
Burnley 2-1 Tottenham
Bournemouth 1-1 Wolves
Newcastle Utd 2-0 Huddersfield
Leicester City 1-4 Crystal Palace
Arsenal 2-0 Southampton
Manchester Utd 0-0 Liverpool
League Cup Final
Manchester City 0-0 Chelsea (City win 4-3 on penalties)
We looked at six words and phrases that you can learn to improve your English. Take a look at the phrases in bold. Do you undertand what they mean?
United held Liverpool to Old Trafford stalemate.
Liverpool and Manchester Utd found it difficult to break down the other team’s defence.
Both Manchester Utd against Liverpool and Chelsea against Manchester City finished in goalless draws.
It looked like United had broken the deadlock near the end, but the goal was disallowed for offside.
Manchester City beat Chelsea on penalties to win the League Cup.
Can you use the words in bold in a different sentence? Write a sentence at the bottom of the page. If you're not sure, listen to the audio for more explanations and examples.
Do you agree with our choices?
Player of the Week: Gerard Deulofeu (Watford)
Team of the Week: Burnley
Goal of the Week: Issa Diop (West Ham)
The Big Match
Spurs v Arsenal
The big match in Matchweek 29 is the North London Derby. Rich thinks it will finish in a draw, but Jack thinks Arsenal will win. Do you agree?
What are your predictions? Have a listen to what Rich and Jack say and then enter our prediction competition below. You get one point for the correct result and three points for predicting the exact score.
Where are you in our prediction league?
Who will be our Premier League Prediction Champion?
Use this form to make your prediction. You can only make one prediction so take care! When you have made your predictions, the form will vanish.
You need to be logged in to make your prediction!
Check out the league table for our prediction competition. What position are you in?
What do you think?
Jack and Rich have spoken about Matchweek 27 in the Premier League. Now it's your turn! Have a look at the questions and write your answers in the comments section below.
- Rich and Jack chose Gerard Deulofeu of Watford as Player of the Week. Do you agree?
- Jack and Rich selected Burnley as their Team of the Week. Do you agree?
- Rich picked Issa Diop's goal for West Ham as Goal of the Week? Did you see it? Do you agree?
- Use this week's vocabulary: Who broke the deadlock for your team this weekend? Do you think it is fair to decide a match on penalties?
Don't forget to make your prediction for this week's Big Match!
Let's get the conversation started and create a community!