This Week: Football Phrasal Verbs 2
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, Rich, Laura and Jack talk about the latest action from the Premier League and have lots of football English for you to learn.
This Week: Football Phrasal Verbs 2
Laura: Hello my name’s Laura and welcome to our weekly round-up section called ‘This Week’ on Premier Skills English.
Jack: Hi there. I’m Jack. We’ve got lots of interesting words and phrases to help you talk about football in English.
Rich: My name’s Rich. If you want to listen and read at the same time we have a transcript of this podcast on the Premier Skills English website.
Laura: This week we focus on an amazing win for West Bromwich Albion, a potential title-decider in the Women’s Super League and Manchester City getting closer to a fifth Premier League title.
Jack: We’re going to look at three headlines from the weekend’s action and look at some phrasal verbs we use in those headlines.
Rich: We want you to use and practise these phrasal verbs by interacting with football fans from around the world in our comments section.
Laura: You can find all our latest content on the Premier Skills English homepage or the Premier Skills-British Council Facebook page.
Jack: The phrasal verbs we are looking at this week are: to send off, to blow away, to set up, to hold on, to close in on and to stick to.
Rich: Remember that we’ll also have a language challenge for you to have a go at later in the show so you need to be ready for that.
Jack: Baggies beat Chelsea to keep survival hopes alive.
Laura: West Bromwich Albion stunned Chelsea with an amazing 5-2 win at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea were on top and leading when Thiago Silva was sent off for the hosts and the Baggies took full advantage by scoring five goals as they blew their opponents away.
Rich: What a result that was for West Brom. Do you think they can stay up?
Jack: I’m not sure but it’s definitely a match and a result their fans will remember for a long time.
Laura: I’m not sure Chelsea fans will want to remember it for long.
Rich: No, and nobody saw it coming. Chelsea hadn’t been beaten under their new manager Thomas Tuchel. That was a fourteen match unbeaten run.
Jack: Let’s move on to some language. We’ve got two phrasal verbs we want to take a look at from our first headline. They are to send off and to blow away.
Laura: To send off is a common football phrasal verb. It means to order a player from the pitch because they’ve broken the rules.
Rich: In the headline, we said that Thiago Silva was sent off.
Jack: We usually use the passive because it’s the referee that sends a player off. She was sent off. He was sent off by the referee. She has been sent off five times in her career.
Laura: There are lots of other phrases we can use when a player is sent off. We can say a player is given a red card or shown a red card or a player can be given their marching orders.
Rich: My favourite is when the commentator says something like it’s an early bath for the number nine which means the player has been sent off.
Jack: I’m sure players usually have showers rather than baths these days. Anyway, the second phrasal verb we want to look at from our first headline is to blow away.
Laura: In the headline, we said that West Brom blew their opponents away. In football, to blow away means to beat a team easily and usually to score lots of goals.
Rich: West Brom won 5-2 and scored five goals. They blew Chelsea away. This phrasal verb does have a couple of meanings outside of football, too.
Jack: If you watch lots of American gangster movies you might have heard this phrasal verb a lot because it also means to kill someone with a gun.
Laura: And it can also mean to be impressed by someone or something. I was blown away by that West Brom result. 5-2 wow! Or, you could say something like: the views at the top of the mountain blew me away. They were amazing.
Rich: Let’s move on to our second headline.
Laura: City and Chelsea set up title decider.
Rich: Manchester City and Chelsea both won again at the weekend to set up what will surely be the title decider when City host Chelsea in the next round of matches. City won 3-0 at Tottenham while Chelsea held on to top spot after a 6-0 win against Birmingham.
Jack: So, with three games left to play in the Women’s Super League, Chelsea lead Manchester City by two points and the next game is: Manchester City against Chelsea.
Laura: As Rich said, this is surely the title decider but we have to wait three weeks for this match. The next round of matches are not until the 24th of April.
Rich: Let’s look at two phrasal verbs from this headline. I would like to look at: to set up and to hold on.
Jack: The phrasal verb to set up is very common in football because it means to make an assist. We might say Sam Kerr set up Fran Kirby or Son Heung-min set up Harry Kane.
Laura: In the headline, we used the phrasal verb set up in a different way. I said City and Chelsea have set up a title decider.
Rich: To set up has a number of meanings but one of them is to arrange. I set up a meeting with Laura and Jack every Monday for example. I arrange a meeting with them.
Jack: By winning their previous matches it means that the match between City and Chelsea will be a title decider - a match that will decide who wins the Women’s Super League. They have set up a title decider.
Laura: The other phrasal verb I want to look at is to hold on. Again, we hear this in football a lot. Manchester United held on for the win or Newcastle held on for a point.
Rich: Here it means to survive in a difficult situation. The other team was attacking but they held on for a point or held on to win.
Jack: In the headline, we said that Chelsea held on to top spot. This has a slightly different meaning. It means to remain in possession of something. Chelsea were top and after this weekend’s matches they are still top - they held on to top spot - to first place.
Laura: Let’s move on to our final headline.
Rich: City make it look easy.
Jack: Manchester City are closing in on a fifth Premier League title after a 2-0 win at third-placed Leicester City. City were frustrated by Leicester in the first half but stuck to their passing game and second-half goals from Benjamin Mendy and Gabriel Jesus gave the away team all three points.
Laura: City only need to win four more games to win the Premier League and they are still in the League Cup, FA Cup and Champions League. They could win the lot.
Rich: Yes, a quadruple is possible. It’s never been done before.
Jack: OK, let’s look at two more phrasal verbs. The ones we want to look at are to close in on and to stick to.
Laura: We said that Manchester City are closing in on the Premier League title. To close in on something means to move towards something that you want to achieve.
Rich: Manchester City want to win the Premier League title and they are closing in on that goal - that objective. They only need to win four more games.
Jack: This phrasal verb is often used when something is attacking something else. We might hear it in a wildlife documentary: the wildebeest munch away happily on the savannah, oblivious to the lions closing in on them.
Laura: It might also be used in war: the attacking forces are closing in on one of the last enemy strongholds.
Rich: The final phrasal verb we want to look at today is to stick to. It means to continue doing something even if it’s difficult. We need to stick to the plan.
Jack: I said that Manchester stuck to their passing game even though it didn’t work well in the first half against Leicester.
Laura: They stuck to this tactic though and they scored twice in the second half.
Rich: How else can we use stick to? I find it difficult to stick to my exercise routine. I’ve always got an excuse. The weather, meeting friends, too much work, I lose my trainers ..
Jack: You’ve got to stick to it, Rich. It’ll be worth it in the end.
Rich: Yes, I know. You’re right. I will. OK, We’ve looked at three stories and lots of phrasal verbs in our headlines. This week we looked at six phrasal verbs. The phrasal verbs we looked at were: to send off, to blow away, to set up, to hold on, to close in on and to stick to.
Jack: Listen to the headlines again to hear these words and phrases in context and don’t forget to look at the website for the transcript if you want to check your understanding of this vocabulary.
Headlines - Repeat
Laura: It’s time for our football prediction. Last week Rich said Leicester - Manchester City would finish in a draw and Jack said Leicester would win but I said Manchester City would win 2-0.
Rich: And Manchester City won 2-0 so you get to choose this week’s match. Which match are you going to go for?
Laura: There’s a big match at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium where Spurs take on Manchester United. Spurs probably need the points more than United who are pretty safe in second place. Tottenham need the win to get into the top four and with United in European action this week I think they might get all three points. Final score: Tottenham 2-0 Manchester United
Jack: I think this one will finish in a draw but with lots of goals. Three-all.
Rich: That’s a bit hopeful, Jack. Tottenham haven’t been playing well recently and United always seem to find a way to win. 1-0 to United.
Jack: What do you think the score will be? Do you agree with me, Rich or Laura?
Laura: We want you to talk about all this week’s football on the Premier Skills English website.
Rich: To finish up the show we’ve got a quick language challenge connected to this week’s vocabulary.
Jack: We looked at six phrasal verbs in this week’s headlines and your language challenge is to use those phrasal verbs now.
Laura: We’re going to give you three sentences and you’ve got to decide which phrasal verb to use. You need to use one of the six we looked at earlier. Can you guess the missing phrasal verb?
Rich: I want to lose a bit of weight but I’m finding it difficult to ******* the diet I’m trying.
Jack: I’ve been trying to ******* a meeting for ages. I think she’s trying to avoid me.
Laura: I can’t believe he ********. It wasn’t a red card in a million years.
Rich: We want you to write the answers on the Premier Skills English website where we have some more questions and activities connected to this week’s show.
Jack: Or write your answers on Apple Podcasts or on Youtube if that’s where you listen to us. Just write the answers in the comments and say hi.
Laura: Before we finish we just wanted to say that we hope you found this lesson useful and we hope all of you stay fit and healthy.
Rich: Bye for now and enjoy your football.
Baggies beat Chelsea to keep survival hopes alive
West Bromwich Albion stunned Chelsea with an amazing 5-2 win at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea were on top and leading when Thiago Silva was sent off for the hosts and the Baggies took full advantage by scoring five goals as they blew their opponents away.
City and Chelsea set up title decider
Manchester City and Chelsea both won again at the weekend to set up what will surely be the title decider when City host Chelsea in the next round of matches. City won 3-0 at Tottenham while Chelsea held on to top spot after a 6-0 win against Birmingham.
City make it look easy
Manchester City are closing in on a fifth Premier League title after a 2-0 win at third-placed Leicester City. City were frustrated by Leicester in the first half but stuck to their passing game and second-half goals from Benjamin Mendy and Gabriel Jesus gave the away team all three points.
Phrasal verbs in the headlines
We looked at six words and phrases in our headlines that you can learn to improve your English. Take a look at the phrasal verbs in bold. Do you understand what they mean?
Thiago Silva was sent off for the hosts.
West Brom blew Chelsea away.
Manchester City and Chelsea set up what will surely be the title decider.
Chelsea held on to top spot.
Manchester City are closing in on a fifth Premier League title.
City stuck to their passing game.
Football Prediction: Tottenham Hotspur v Manchester Utd
Laura thinks Spurs will win this one while Jack has gone for a 3-3 draw and Rich thinks United's fine away form will continue. What do you think will happen? Here are all this weekend's Premier League fixtures:
Tottenham v Manchester Utd
Fulham v Wolves
Manchester City v Leeds Utd
Liverpool v Aston Villa
Crystal Palace v Chelsea
Burnley v Newcastle
West Ham v Leicester City
Sheffield United v Arsenal
West Brom v Southampton
Brighton v Everton
Jack, Laura and Rich set you a language challenge. In the podcast, we used six phrasal verbs. Here are three more sentences that use three of these phrasal verbs. Can you guess the missing phrasal verbs?
I want to lose a bit of weight but I’m finding it difficult to _______ the diet I’m trying.
I’ve been trying to ________ a meeting for ages. I think she’s trying to avoid me.
I can’t believe he _______. It wasn’t a red card in a million years.
Write the correct answer in the comments section at the bottom of the page.
Talk about the headlines
Jack, Laura and Rich looked at three stories in the news and some phrasal verbs that might be new to you. Now it's your turn! Have a look at the questions and write your answers in the comments section below.
- Which team has blew their opponents away at the weekend?
- Who got sent off this weekend?
- Which team are closing in on multiple trophies this season?
- Have you got a prediction?
- Can you do our language challenge?
Write your comments and answers in the section below.