With legions of fans from around the world congregating in Qatar for a feast of football, there’s a chance you could miss out if you don’t know your Hollywood passes from your worldies.
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To help bewildered fans navigate a babel of football terminology, Qatar Airways’ cabin crew, who between them speak around 45 languages, from Arabic to Zulu, have put together a glossary of words and phrases which may be heard more often until the final on 18 December as fans swap stories and favourite moments in the air and on the ground.
Fans might use any of them, thinking they’re internationally recognised terminology, only to wonder why other supporters may not understand them.
Here are some of the interesting ones:
- Bananenflankte or ibanana:
For German or South African fans this translates as a ‘banana cross’, the sort of delivery from a wing that tempts the goalkeeper as it bends deliciously in the air.
- Early doors:
A term some commentators use to describe the opening stages of a game.
- False nine:
A lone striker or centre who drops back into the midfield, making it more difficult for opposing teams using a man-to-man defence.
- Fox in the box:
A player who may not be the most skilled goal scorer in the team, but who is very good at converting from inside the penalty area.
- Hollywood pass:
A long-range pass that looks good but is rarely effective at that time in the game. Nigerians call these flashy passes that are no use to anyone ‘idea balls’.
When a player kicks the ball between the legs of an opposing player and then runs around him. The player who has been outmanoeuvred is said to have been ‘nutmegged’.
- Olympic goal:
A goal that is scored from a corner kick without any other player on either team touching the ball. It’s rare and is usually the result of a goal-keeping mistake.
- Park the bus:
A favoured José Mourinho tactic where the entire team defends in order to tire out the opposition and preserve a clean sheet.
An odd French term, literally translated as potato, but which fans use to describe a long, powerful strike. The English equivalent is a ‘screamer, while German supporters refer to a ‘fallrueckzieher’. South Africans say ‘umbane’, which means electricity.
A style of play Barcelona made famous, which involves short passing and quick movement.
When a player scores an incredible goal.
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