Diversity at the World Cup

The FIFA World Cup 2018 in Russia is well underway and there are 32 teams that have travelled to Russia from all over the world, each speaking their own language. This has resulted in there being a greater need for translation services to assist with interpreting and merchandising. At every game there are translators and interpreters present, along with commentators fluent in multiple languages that will be broadcasted all over the world, however, all official World Cup documentation must be in standard English.

This year is also the first year that 4 Arab nations are playing (Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Egypt and Morocco) meaning that the Arabic and French languages are being more heavily represented than previous years. Also, 3 Nordic nations are playing (Iceland, Sweden and Denmark) meaning there is a prevalence of Nordic speakers. Notable absences this year will be Italy, who failed to qualify for the first time in 60 years, the Netherlands and the United States, who are facing their first qualification failure since 1986.

As a result of so many different nationalities travelling to Russia for the World Cup, there has been a huge impact on the diversity of different languages that some Russian services are available in, for example, the Moscow metro app is now available in 7 languages since the beginning of World Cup.

Learn the football lingo

If you want to brush up on your language skills, here are some key football phrases in the languages that will be most common at this year’s World Cup…

English Spanish German French Russian
World Cup Mundial Weltmeisterschaft Coupe du monde Чемпионат мира по футболу (Chempionat mira po futbolu)
goal gol tor but Гол (gol)
penalty penalti elfmeter Un pénalty Пенальти (penal-ti)
pass pase pass Une passe Пас (pas)
Referee Árbitro Schiedsrichter Un arbitre арбитр (Arbitr) or судья (sudya)
foul falta foul Une faute Фол (fol)

There you have it: the essential football terminology in the top 5 languages that will be present at the World Cup, ready to give you the ultimate 2018 World Cup experience!

The 2018 FIFA World Cup has brought back memories at Language Insight of when we were selected as the language partner of choice for the Rugby World Cup 2015. Our translation and interpreting skills were in demand and the project included the translation and proofreading of speeches for the opening ceremony, attending and interpreting at disciplinary hearings with non‑English speaking players and constant monitoring of games to predict when interpreters would be required.

For all your translation requests contact us and we can get the ball rolling to help you with all your translation needs… game on!