With the start of the World Cup today, I wanted to compile a list of how to say "goal" (event of scoring, not the target) in every language of the 2018 World Cup participating countries. As in many languages it's just a goal, I'm mainly interested in countries which use different word for goal or spell it differently.

  • 2
    You could find a bit from Wiktionary. Of course, getting some response from native speakers of those languages is more reliable. (Perhaps at least for some of the languages there are a few on this site.)
    – Martin
    Commented Jun 14, 2018 at 15:39
  • I feel this is really much more an etymology question than a sports one. Unsurprisingly, if you take a bunch of Indo-European languages (which is basically what we have in the World Cup), you get a lot of similarity. Step outside that to any other language family and you get very different words - for ones spoken in Europe, try Finnish or Basque. Go further outside to e.g. native African, American or Australasian languages and you get even more variation.
    – Philip Kendall
    Commented Jun 14, 2018 at 22:19
  • Indian languages have different words for the English word "goal", but in the context of football (and other similar sports which have a goal), it is called just "goal".
    – Masked Man
    Commented Jul 3, 2018 at 16:41
  • The word for goal in Arabic is هدف [hdf], but Arabic commentators famously yell goal. An insight from native speaker would be helpful.
    – gdrt
    Commented Jul 21, 2018 at 16:56
  • 2
    @gdrt Actually it is [hadaf] what we're looking for ([marma(n)] was the goal itself, so this doesn't apply here.. sorry for the bad translation there - I asked a Syrian friend), but like in Croatia they often use Gol instead of their native Version (Cilj in Croatia). Maybe we should agree on putting all translations into the answer if there is more than one.
    – dly
    Commented Jul 24, 2018 at 8:58

1 Answer 1


The list:

  • Arabic (Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Egypt): هدف [pronounced as "hadaf"], Gol
  • Catalan (Spain, France): Gol
  • Croatian (Croatia): Gol, Cilj
  • Danish (Denmark): Mål
  • Darija (Morocco): Bite
  • Dutch (Belgium): Doelpunt, Goal
  • English (Australia, England, Nigeria*): Goal
  • French (France, Belgium, Switzerland, Senegal*): But
  • German (Germany, Switzerland, Belgium): Tor
  • Icelandic (Iceland): Mark
  • Italian (Switzerland): Gol
  • Japanese (Japan):ゴール [gōru]
  • Korean (South Korea):골 [gol]
  • Persian (Iran): گل [pronounced as "gol"], توی دروازه [pronounced as "tooye darvaze"]
  • Polish (Poland): Gol, Bramka
  • Portuguese (Brazil): Gol
  • Portuguese (Portugal): Golo
  • Russian (Russia): Гол [Gol]
  • Serbian (Serbia): Гол [gol], Branka
  • Spanish (Argentina, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Spain, Uruguay): Gol
  • Swedish (Sweden): Mål
  • Wolof (Senegal*):

*Could be interesting in countries that have several languages to find if there is another way of saying or writing goal


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