Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"
Jessica Beck
"Director of IELTS Training"

Today you’ll learn sports and football phrases for an IELTS 8+ in Vocabulary.

Do you play sports, or enjoy watching them? If you do, chances are you do this in your own language.

Or, maybe you’re not into sports, and really have no idea how to describe athletics or athletes.

In either case, you need to prepare some English phrases to use when asked about this topic in IELTS Speaking or Writing.

First, do some independent research!

Choose a sports team from your city or a city you’d like to live in. Read 1 or 2 articles about a recent game or performance.

From your reading, choose 3-4 phrases to add to your vocabulary notebook, and read the articles out loud.





8+ Vocabulary for Sports and/or Football:

Top of the standings- ranking really high in the league/organization, usually in the best 3 teams

Club– in soccer/football, this means team

Manager– in soccer/football, this means coach


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Championship contender– a team with a chance to make it to the finals, or the championship

Mediocre performance– playing below average; a disappointing performance

Struggle on the road– not play well in other cities

At home– playing in their own city

Shots on goal– the number of times a player kicked it toward the goal

Hit the back of the net– make a goal

Play a man down– In football/soccer, when a player is given a red card or two yellow cards, they must leave the field. Their team is not allowed to put another player on; thus, the team must play with 10 players instead of 11.

Biased ref– a referee who makes calls which are unfair toward a team

Noteworthy– excellent


How would you use these phrases?

Share your example sentence in the comments section below!

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