Humblings, hammerings and humiliations: Football’s own lexicon of losing

Spartak Moscow were the unfortunate opponents for Liverpool’s second 7-0 win of this year’s Champions League group stage, but how should fans describe their defeat? Was it a hammering, a humbling, or a demolition?

The vocabulary involved is varied and subtle, with just one goal having the potential to completely rewrite the script. With that in mind, here’s your guide to the lexicon of losing.


You’ve been: Edged out

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Your game will have been described as “tight”, “nervy”, and maybe even “on a knife edge”, but once that whistle blows all that counts is that you’ve been edged out.


You’ve been: Beaten

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A good old-fashioned, standard defeat. You turned up, 90 minutes were played, and you lost. Probably deservedly.


You’ve been: Brushed aside

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Your fellow fans probably left early, while the opposition are likely to have celebrated their third goal in muted fashion.

Get over there, you’ve been brushed aside.


You’ve been: Thrashed

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The 4-0 scoreline is the green light for the more violent description – your side might have a few bumps and bruises after this one.


You’ve been: Hammered

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You were never in this game, were you? At 5-0, your very preparation beforehand has come into question. You have been bashed about a fair bit as a result.


You’ve been: Humbled

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At 6-0 your opponents’ expertise becomes relevant – they’ve assessed you, worked you out for the chancers you are, and embarrassed you.

Gary Lineker tweets a joke about your performance – it receives 10,000 retweets.


You’ve been: Demolished

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A season-defining defeat that comes with this kick in the teeth: (SEVEN). The pundits earnestly question your place in the competition.

You’ve been reduced to rubble, brought to the ground, and robbed of your structural integrity – demolished.

8-0 +

You’ve been: Humiliated

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Eyebrows are raised. Sympathy supersedes criticism. You have been: humiliated.

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