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Hello, my name is Rich, and welcome to premier schools, English premier vocabulary. Hi there, I'm Jack. We're here to help you with your football. English Premier Vocabulary is a mini podcast for you to learn football, English, one word at a time. We have three different levels for you. Easy, medium and hard.


This episode is hard, so we're looking at more difficult football phrases and idioms.


The phrase we're looking at in this episode is the eye of a needle, the phrase is very old, and translations of the phrase can be found in Jewish, Christian and Islamic texts.


The phrase is used as a metaphor and metaphor is a figure of speech that can help explain an idea or make a comparison.


The eye of a needle is a metaphor used to describe a very narrow opening.


And NATO is what we use for sewing, for sewing clothes. It's a small piece of metal with a sharp point at one end and a tiny little hole at the other to put the thread. This tiny hole is called the eye. The eye of the needle. I tried sewing once, but after an hour of trying to put the thread through the eye of the needle, I gave up and asked my mum for some help.


Yes, it's a very small gap, a very narrow opening. And threading a needle is very difficult for some people. Both the Koran and the Bible used the phrase in a similar way. They talk about a camel going through the eye of a needle. Well, that would be impossible. Yes, exactly, and that's why the phrase is used. Let's have a look at how the phrase is used in football.


We've talked about the eye of a needle being a very narrow opening and something that is very difficult or impossible to pass through, the phrase is usually used in football to describe a pass that's very difficult to make successfully, especially when there are a lot of opposition defenders around.


Creative players like David Silva and Juan Mata are often able to put the ball through the eye of a needle, they're able to find little spaces to pass the ball to a teammate and create chances to score when there are lots of defenders and little space available.


Going back to the sewing metaphor, we often hear the verb thread when we hear this phrase, the thread is the thin string of cotton we use when sewing and the verb to thread is what we do. When we pass something long and thin through a narrow gap or hole, a good player can thread the ball through the eye of a needle.


Manchester United's Bobby Charlton once famously said this about the French player Michel Platini. Charleton said that Platini could thread the ball through the eye of a needle, but that's impossible. Not for some players.


There's the final whistle.


We'll be back soon with more premie vocabulary from Premier Skills.


English bye for now and enjoy your football.