Italian terms you should know as Italian football fan


If you’re here, it means one thing: you’re a true fan of Italian football and you simply love watching the games with either their national team or some Italian clubs – one of the most popular or those gathering less attention. It also means that you don’t know Italian and you would like to catch some phrases. Get ready to start: we’ll teach you everything you need to know!

Why do they love the football so much?

If you’re reading this article, you probably don’t need an asnwer to that question, but let us set a small reminder. Why do Italians love the football so much? Not only because their national team is successfull in multinational tournaments, but also because this sport matches their well known enthusiasm.

Italians can be really proud about their national team. Not only did they win FIFA World Cup multiple times, but also earned a couple of titles on UEFA European Championship. No wonder Italian people can get really excited during the most important football tournaments!

If you’re watching the match with one of your Italian friends, you probably already know that when they get passionate, they might forget about the need to communicate with others, who don’t know Italian. That’s why it’s really good to catch some phrases!

Let’s start with some basics

First of all, you should know the sport itself is called “il calcio”. This word is a base for many Italian phrases connected with sport, so if you’ll hear something that sound close to “calcio”, it might mean the penalty kick or many more.

If you’re about to watch a national team match with your friends, don’t be surprised if they call them “Azzurri”. This is the name Italians use for their national team and it’s connected to the color of their sports clothes. Other than that, you might also want to remember the phrase “Forza Azzurri”, which means more or less “you can do it”, “let’s go” or other form of encouragement.

(Don’t) collect the cards!

As you probably know, the players can receive two types of cards – yellow (not good, but not so bad either) and red (which is a bad, bad news for the whole team!). The first one is “il cartellino giallo” and it can make your Italian colleagues slightly worried, but the true reason to be concerned about what’s going to happen on the football pitch is “il cartellino rosso”. If you listen carefully to your Italian friends, the red card might also lead to expanding your Italian dictionary with a few (hundreds) of creative curses. We’re sure you’ll catch them eventually.

Who’s playing?

It’s also a good thing to know a term or two when it comes to the players. One of the roles we’re positive you know is protecting the goal from placing the ball in it and it’s the goalkeeper’s job. Your Italian friends will call this person “portiere” and we can promise, when the ball will be close to this player, every Italian football fan will be frantic, no matter if their team is about to score or lose a goal.

Among all the words you should know are probably some curses, as we mentioned. But more than that, you should also know the phrase “scommesse sportive“. The words we’ve provided are a great start, if you want to understand your Italian friends. Memorize them and watching matches will become even more enjoyable!