football question - dribble?

Egoexpress

Senior Member
Hungary, Hungarian
Hi,

I got a little puzzled, I've always thought that dribbling in football\soccer is something that you do when you carry the ball and keep the possession of it. I was wondering if you call,say, what Ronaldo does very well, he deceives his opponent by moving funny and tricky, if you know what I mean.

Thanks for helping.
 
  • JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    Perhaps you shoul explain what your question is a little more clearly. I'm certainly confused by your use of the word "carry" (which usually means using your hands to move something from one place to another)!
     

    Egoexpress

    Senior Member
    Hungary, Hungarian
    I must have made a little error, I thought carrying could be done by your feet as well. Anyway..
     

    panjandrum

    Occasional Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Dribbling is running with the ball at your feet, under control.
    No doubt a skilled player can deceive her opponent by "moving funny and tricky" so that she can take the ball past him.
     

    Franzi

    Senior Member
    (San Francisco) English
    I've always thought that dribbling in football/soccer is something that you do when you carry the ball and keep possession of it. I was wondering if you call,say, what Ronaldo does very well (he deceives his opponent by moving funny and tricky, if you know what I mean) "dribbling".
    That's your question, right? Do we call that thing he does "dribbling"?

    The answer is, yes. Here's the definition from Wikipedia:

    "In sports such as football (soccer), basketball, bandy and water polo, dribbling refers to the maneuvering of a ball around a defender through short skillful taps or kicks with either the legs (football/soccer), hands (basketball), stick (bandy) or swimming strokes (water polo). The purpose of such an action is to bring the ball past a defender legally and to create opportunities to score."http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dribbling


    Ronaldo may be more skillful than other players, but the action is still called "dribbling".
     

    De paula

    Member
    Portuguese
    Yes, you're right Egoexpress! In soccer The word carrying is the right one to use for the action of moving the ball up and down the field with your feet of course.

    Now, if you want to describe the action of dribbling you would be better off using definitions such as "to gracefully move the ball in between opponents" or " to skillfully dance with the ball around opponents."

    And then again, this is in soccer!:)
     
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    panjandrum

    Occasional Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    De paula said:
    Yes, you're right Egoexpress! In soccer The word carrying is the right one to use for the action of moving the ball up and down the field with your feet of course.

    Now, if you want to describe the action of dribbling you would be better off using definitions such as "to gracefully move the ball in between opponents" or " to skillfully dance with the ball around opponents."

    And then again, this is in soccer!:)
    Dribbling does not necessarily involve an opposing player.
    The essence of dribbling is that the ball remains under the player's control at all times.
    dribble
    To keep (the ball) moving along the ground in front of and close to one by a rapid succession of short pushes, instead of sending it as far as possible by a vigorous kick.
    OED

    You may, of course, dribble the ball past an opponent.
    But you may also dribble the ball the length of the pitch in a straight line (if your opponents are asleep).

    The Wiki definition is wrong.
    The text that follows the definition is correct.
    In typical game play, players attempt to propel the ball toward their opponents' goal through individual control of the ball, such as by dribbling (running with the ball close to their feet).
     
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    De paula

    Member
    Portuguese
    dribble
    To keep (the ball) moving along the ground in front of and close to one by a rapid succession of short pushes, instead of sending it as far as possible by a vigorous kick.

    Well to me, according to my knowledge of the game and of the English language the definitions above seems more like carrying than actually dribbling.:)
     

    panjandrum

    Occasional Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    dribble
    To keep (the ball) moving along the ground in front of and close to one by a rapid succession of short pushes, instead of sending it as far as possible by a vigorous kick.

    Well to me, according to my knowledge of the game and of the English language the definitions above seems more like carrying than actually dribbling.:)
    I don't understand?
    As JulianStuart said in post #2, carrying usually involves hands, not kicking something along the ground.
     

    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    I've learned something today. After more than 50 years of following Fulham and Chelsea on and off, this is the first time I've heard the word "carrying" used this way. I must have just not been paying attention :) but, perhaps more relevant, I've not been involved in training or playing myself, just listening to the commentaries (where it's not used much, in my experience). As an aside, there seem to be way more uses of the word in the US g**gle hits than in the UK's site (vary qualitative statement!) so perhaps there's a also a BE AE thing here.

    The picture I get from the text where it's used that way is of generally advancing the ball down the pitch, while dribble seems to fit more closely with Panj's description : short pushes where the ball never gets more than a couple of feet from the dribbler. Thus carrying could be some longer pushes intermingled with some dribbling when opponents come closer. Carry clearly means maintaining control as the advance down the pitch happens, but seems not as restricted as dribble in how that happens?
     

    Rational_gaze

    Senior Member
    British English
    I don't understand?
    As JulianStuart said in post #2, carrying usually involves hands, not kicking something along the ground.
    You've never heard of someone carrying something on their head, or carrying a backpack? ...carrying a disease? :)

    Carrying applies to any form of support given to something while moving it.

    The term 'carrying' would seem to emphasise the close proximity of the ball to the feet, regardless of the fact that it will be actually be on the ground for the majority of the time.
     

    De paula

    Member
    Portuguese
    Here you go, from a life time soccer player and a coach in the US for the last few years.

    In soccer The word carrying is the right one to use for the action of moving the ball up and down the field with your feet of course.

    Now, if you want to describe the action of dribbling you would be better off using definitions such as "to gracefully move the ball in between opponents" or " to skillfully dance with the ball around opponents."

    And then again, this is in soccer!:)
     

    panjandrum

    Occasional Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    You've never heard of someone carrying something on their head, or carrying a backpack? ...carrying a disease? :)

    Carrying applies to any form of support given to something while moving it.

    The term 'carrying' would seem to emphasise the close proximity of the ball to the feet, regardless of the fact that it will be actually be on the ground for the majority of the time.
    I'll happily concede the disease, but the something on your head and your backpack involved picking something up with your hands.

    It is unfortunate that Egoexpress has not actually asked a specific question so that the theme of the thread appears to be the different uses of "carry" rather than explanation of "dribble".

    Ronaldo may dribble the ball for a considerable distance without encountering an opponent.
    He may also dribble the ball round an opponent.
    ______________________________________

    Here you go, from a life time soccer player and a coach in the US for the last few years.

    In soccer The word carrying is the right one to use for the action of moving the ball up and down the field with your feet of course.

    Now, if you want to describe the action of dribbling you would be better off using definitions such as "to gracefully move the ball in between opponents" or " to skillfully dance with the ball around opponents."

    And then again, this is in soccer!:)
    Are you quoting yourself or an alternative authoritative source?

    It is beginning to look as if dribble has very different meanings on either side of the Atlantic.
     

    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    Whatever something might be carried by, it seems panj and I have associated with word the concept of the item not being on the ground while it is carried (being on the ground and being moved forward would entail pushing, sliding , dragging, rolling etc.). As I said, the dictionaries and searches, as indicators of usage, prove us "wrong". If someone is running fast down the pitch kicking the ball ahead a meter or three every few steps and, say, making a run down the wing, occasionally bypassing a slow defender, that may be carrying but it's not dribbling, in the meaning I grew up with. I associate that word with keeping the ball very close to the feet, usually in order to steer it skillfully, even gracefully in twists and turns, past the dumbfounded opponent :)

    So, for those who use the word carry frequently in soccer discussions, is it any different from dribbling?? Enquiring minds (well a couple at least) are standing by :)
     

    De paula

    Member
    Portuguese
    I'm quoting myself, and here in the US or in any other place in Latin America people would never call it a dribble if Ronaldo had run with the ball across the field without encoutering a single opponent. No matter how many miles he had run!

    Never! That would be called carrying the ball across the field.
     

    Franzi

    Senior Member
    (San Francisco) English
    I'm quoting myself, and here in the US or in any other place in Latin America people would never call it a dribble if Ronaldo had run with the ball across the field without encoutering a single opponent. No matter how many miles he had run!

    Never! That would be called carrying the ball across the field.
    The definition of 'dribbling' I learned in PE class as a kid matches Panjandrum's. However, my boyfriend who watches soccer agrees that, in a professional context, it's used just how you are defining it.
     

    panjandrum

    Occasional Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    I'm quoting myself, and here in the US or in any other place in Latin America people would never call it a dribble if Ronaldo had run with the ball across the field without encoutering a single opponent. No matter how many miles he had run!

    Never! That would be called carrying the ball across the field.
    In that case, we have undoubtedly discovered an AE/BE difference.

    Here, dribbling is the skill, not the beating of an opponent.
    The first footballer to carry the ball was William Webb Ellis, at Rugby School, thus inspiring the game of Rugby Football (so it is said).
     

    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    I'm quoting myself, and here in the US or in any other place in Latin America people would never call it a dribble if Ronaldo had run with the ball across the field without encoutering a single opponent. No matter how many miles he had run!
    OK, I'm glad to see you have been in the middle of an English-speaking community where this word gets lots of use and can help us out. I presume in Latin America they don't use dribble and carry but coprresponding Spanish or Portuguese words (or maybe not???)

    Never! That would be called carrying the ball across the field.
    Seems like we agree on that, in my mind because he's very unlikely to have done that by keeping the ball within a foot or two of his feet and touching it every step (or two).

    Carrying sounds like it can be fast but to me dribbling is slow because of all the ball-control required to manoeuvre around and between the opponents. How would you define dribbling, for egoexpress's first question? I'm still trying to learn the new word (for me at least) "carry" and understand how it differs from dribbling - so knowing what you mean by dribbling will help me and egoexpress :)
     

    De paula

    Member
    Portuguese
    Well, I would go as far as saying that " One can dribble an opponent without running, just by keeping the ball away from the latest".

    I don't know if it make sense for the rest of you, but in the professional scene you can find some pretty amazing players, that do not need much room to beat an opponent! And that is still called dribbling.
     

    Cypherpunk

    Senior Member
    US, English
    Yes. I coach soccer, too, and a lot of the AE/BE terminology is completely different. When coaching, as a player receives a pass, we would say 'turn and carry the ball' or 'pass'. Dribble is very rarely used, and it is usually limited to describing jogging or running with very close, short kicks, when the player keeps tight control of the ball. Plus, we'd only use it when we are doing a practice drill. I can't recall ever hearing it during a game (not match).
     

    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    Thanks, but you still didn't give us a definition of dribble!

    My Oxford English Dictionary has " To keep (the ball) moving along the ground in front of and close to one by successive short pushes" This frequently involves changes of direction and moving between and around defenders, but the bold words emphasize the essence of dribbling.

    What say you?
     

    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    Thanks Cypherpunk for the AE BE insight. Your description and the one I'm used to (from my BE days) match quite well. The fact that it's not used much in AE is what has caused this discussion, I suspect :) but it makes sense that it's used the way you describe in training - as a tool to develop close tight ball control needed for retaining possession and making progress in close quarters with opponents. It's still used quite a bit by English commentators during matches on pitches :):)
     

    Rational_gaze

    Senior Member
    British English
    I'll happily concede the disease, but the something on your head and your backpack involved picking something up with your hands.
    Is how you came to be carrying something relevant? And I would pick up a backpack by putting my arms through the straps, although I'd probably adjust their position with my hands. But this is the act of 'picking up', not carrying.

    I don't use my hands at all when I'm carrying myself (although they are part of what is being carried). Someone might carry their team to victory without ever touching them. If I shout, my voice carries perfectly well without my hands getting involved. Pipes carry things and possess no hand-like appendages.

    Anyway...

    To me, in sports, dribbling must include changes of course to confuse the opponent - you do not kick the ball in the straightest line from A to B. These frequent changes of direction necessitate that the ball is kept close, and is slower than taking a direct course.

    Yes, you could dribble without encountering an opponent, but then you'd be practicing... or perhaps you've gone a little insane.

    I'd take carrying (in 'soccer') to mean that you advance the ball up the field while keeping it in close proximity to yourself.
     

    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    To me, in sports, dribbling must include changes of course to confuse the opponent - you do not kick the ball in the straightest line from A to B. These frequent changes of direction necessitate that the ball is kept close, and is slower than taking a direct course.

    Yes, you could dribble without encountering an opponent, but then you'd be practicing... or perhaps you've gone a little insane.

    I'd take carrying (in 'soccer') to mean that you advance the ball up the field while keeping it in close proximity to yourself.
    Getting there :)
    Carrying seems to mean "to mean that you advance the ball up the field while keeping it in close proximity to yourself" and this may or may not include some periods of dribbling when encountering and outmanoeuvring opponents, where the ball is kept, by necessity, even closer than in their absence.
     

    Cypherpunk

    Senior Member
    US, English
    Sure. Carrying could include double step-overs, ball lobs, flipping the ball up, then heading it over a defender and continuing upfield, etc. (not that we generally encourage showboating in games, as it leads more to one-on-one challenges than scoring, but...). Dribbling is strictly the close control of the ball with the feet.
     

    De paula

    Member
    Portuguese
    Hey, JulianStuart I've been explaining and giving examples for the meaning of carrying and dribbling in soccer for a while now, and it just seems to me that you're not willing to take my word!

    That's sad! Perhaps the fact that Portuguese is my first language has something to do with that.

    Maybe I should just let you native speakers figure out whatever you want to figure out!
     
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    Rational_gaze

    Senior Member
    British English
    I've just re-read your posts, De paula, and I can't see where you disagree with what JulianStuart just said. :confused:
     

    De paula

    Member
    Portuguese
    I don't disagree at all, in fact I'm glad that it's finally becoming clear for him. I guess my frustration was that I've been pointing to the asnswer for a while now!

    Thanks for the reply!
     
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    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    dribble
    To keep (the ball) moving along the ground in front of and close to one by a rapid succession of short pushes, instead of sending it as far as possible by a vigorous kick.

    Well to me, according to my knowledge of the game and of the English language the definitions above seems more like carrying than actually dribbling.:)
    Here you go, from a life time soccer player and a coach in the US for the last few years.

    In soccer The word carrying is the right one to use for the action of moving the ball up and down the field with your feet of course.

    Now, if you want to describe the action of dribbling you would be better off using definitions such as "to gracefully move the ball in between opponents" or " to skillfully dance with the ball around opponents."

    And then again, this is in soccer!:)
    I don't disagree at all, in fact I'm glad that it's finally becoming clear for him. I guess my frustration was that I've been pointing to the asnswer for a while now!

    Thanks for the reply!
    Hi de Paula - it's not that I haven't been wanting to take your word for it, it's just that you haven't been very clear. After the description (from the Oxford English Dictionary) at the top , I highlighted your response in red, you said it wasn't dribbling but now it seems as though it actually is. The "graceful and skillful dance" comments didn't really describe the motion of keeping the ball very close.
    However, I'm glad we all agree on what dribbling is and, as a bonus, also what carrying is, too!
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    A few points about BE use of these words:

    1. You can carry the ball by dribbling, just as you can travel by driving a car. They aren't necessarily the same thing, but the one does not exclude the other.

    2. When you carry the ball, both you and the ball move more or less together - you aren't carrying it when you pass it.

    3. Dribbling involves close control; carrying does not imply (neither does it exclude, of course) such proximity of the ball to the feet.
     
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    Egoexpress

    Senior Member
    Hungary, Hungarian
    I hope this one will work.

    http://www.nb1.hu/video/2008/0626/0626.jpg

    In the picture Ronaldinho who is know as a great dribbler has carried the ball all along the wing and finally he encountered the last defender at corner of the box, Ronaldinho has to do it all alone, there's no striker nearby. He is likely to preform a dribble. I don't know if you watch football, but those who do will know what he is about to do. There's the defender right in front of him and he's going to decieve him by raising his left foot over the ball then the right one very very quickly and after all that he's going to push the ball to either side to tackle the goalkeeper and to score.

    According to what you have agreed on, that's a dribble, right?

    Thanks for the help.
     

    Cypherpunk

    Senior Member
    US, English
    There's no video, but I suspect he does a double step-over (he does this often and well). He would do that while dribbling, and I would consider it dribbling. In the strictest sense, I learned and have always heard (in AE) that dribbling only means close control of the ball with the feet (no knees, head, chest, etc.). It seems that in BE, dribbling can mean a combination of any of those skills.
     

    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    I think Cypherpunk has the right name for that specific manoeuvre and it would be part of dribbling. As far as I have always understood, dribbling only involves the feet and can include any fancy moves as long as the ball is kept under control and very close to the feet.
     

    Rational_gaze

    Senior Member
    British English
    The British meaning is the same as the AE one. Dribbling does not normally include using the head or chest. To me it's strongly implied that the ball is kept fairly close to the ground.
     

    William Ivanhoe

    New Member
    Flemish - Belgium
    Maybe after 10 years, it is a good moment to lift the veil about the etymological origin of the English word ‘dribble’.
    No matter what is to be found as official explanation.

    As we all know many English words are directly borrowed from Old Flemish/Dutch. In this case ‘dribble’ seems to come directly from ‘trippelen’ (trappelen). Its the diminuitive form of ‘trappen’ (to step, to kick), meaning making repetitive small steps/kicks, contrary to the bigger leaps when just running.

    So I don’t think 'dribbling' should be explained as much around ‘carrying’ (be it with hands or feet), but more connected with the repeated small steps and small kicks which is common during "de trippeling" act.
     

    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    Maybe after 10 years, it is a good moment to lift the veil about the etymological origin of the English word ‘dribble’.
    No matter what is to be found as official explanation.

    As we all know many English words are directly borrowed from Old Flemish/Dutch. In this case ‘dribble’ seems to come directly from ‘trippelen’ (trappelen). Its the diminuitive form of ‘trappen’ (to step, to kick), meaning making repetitive small steps/kicks, contrary to the bigger leaps when just running.

    So I don’t think 'dribbling' should be explained as much around ‘carrying’ (be it with hands or feet), but more connected with the repeated small steps and small kicks which is common during "de trippeling" act.
    :thumbsup: Thanks for the etymology
    There's the defender right in front of him and he's going to decieve him by raising his left foot over the ball then the right one very very quickly and after all that he's going to push the ball to either side to tackle the goalkeeper and to score.

    According to what you have agreed on, that's a dribble, right?
    I know the post is a few years old but the action in bold in that post is not "a dribble", mainly because he does not touch the ball :) Dribble is not a single action (so we don't say "He performed a dribble"), it is a series of continuing little kicks as one moves forward with the ball under control. It seems to be one specific way to "carry the ball" forward.
     
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