UEFA Euro 2016 – football phrases and clichés

For football fans all over Europe the wait is over. UEFA Euro 2016 brings a kaleidoscope of colour and a cacophony of noise as 24 national teams compete for the right to be crowned European champions.

Being held in France and with the slogan ‘Le Rendez-Vous’, UEFA Euro 2016 will be watched by millions of people worldwide.

For the first time, the European Championship final tournament will be contested by 24 teams, having been expanded from the 16-team format used since 1996.

With so many teams now involved, we at Eclipse Translations began thinking about the vast range of languages that will be spoken by the players on the pitch and the large number of fans (estimated at up to 1 million) that will arrive in France. The potential for misunderstanding could be great, but then we began discussing the universal football language – the very unusual phrases and descriptions that are often used as part of the Beautiful Game.

So, for a bit of summer fun, we thought we would take a look at the quirky English Premiership vocabulary and see how the clichés and expressions used might be similarly described and interpreted by fans in other European countries.

In the lead up to each game throughout the tournament we will put out a tweet highlighting one of the following example phrases – ‘You’re Not Fit To Referee’, ‘Will (country x) Need To Park The Bus’, ‘The 12th Man’, ‘Nutmegs’, ‘Stepovers’ etc.

Then, our translators will provide the most comparable and appropriate translation of each term in the language of the two teams that are playing.

While it is bit of fun, it allows us a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the diverse range of languages that exist across Europe.

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