a near goal (in football) in English?


Senior Member

I'm loking for a noun, which I can't find in dictionaries. What do you call a "near / almost goal" in a football match?
For example: "Although we could see 3 beautiful "almost goals" during the match, neither of the teams could score."

Or maybe you don't use a noun here but use verbal periphrasis? Would that sound more natural?

  • Szkot

    Senior Member
    UK English
    I would call them near misses, although beautiful near misses would sound strange. We also talk about a team or player coming close, meaning coming close to scoring.

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    A scoring chance would be a statistical probability ("he has a scoring chance of 25%"). A scoring opportunity is possible. But near miss is the everyday expression.
    You don't watch football on TV, Keith.

    A scoring chance is footy-commentator-speak for an opportunity to score, and I'd say that footy-commentator-speak expressions are, inevitably, given the popularity of the sport in the UK, everyday expressions.

    The more obviously literate commentators do also use your expression, a scoring opportunity.


    Senior Member
    English - Northeast US
    In AE we might say "a goal attempt" or "a shot at the goal", which unfortunately missed.

    (Yes, we do play the game, even if we call it "soccer" instead of "football")
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