Clean sheet

A clean sheet is a football term, meaning a game in which the team referred to have not conceded any goals. The main purpose of goalkeepers and defenders is to keep a clean sheet.

Example: "Team A" beats "Team B" 3-0, so "Team A" are said to have "kept a clean sheet," as they have not conceded any goals.

The equivalent term in American English is shutout; however the standard term used for international and club competitions around the world when no goals are conceded is a clean sheet.

Origin of Term

The term first appeared in the 1930s and derived from sports reporting in which the reporter would use separate pieces of paper to record different events of the game. If one team did not let in a goal, then that team's "details of goals conceded" column would be left blank, hence resulting in a 'clean sheet'.

Alternatively the term may post back to Willy "Fatty" Foulke during his Bradford City days. While playing against Accrington Stanley in February 1907, it is said that Foulke's jersey clashed with the red of Stanley and no-one could find a jersey large enough to fit him, so he played wrapped in a sheet, procured from a nearby house. Bradford won the game 1–0 and Foulke didn't dive during the match, so he kept a 'clean sheet'.

Fantasy Football

In Fantasy Football defenders and goalkeepers get awarded points for keeping a clean sheet.

External links

* [http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/p/portsmouth/6509613.stm James eyes new clean sheet record]
* [http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/sport/football-news/scottish-football/spl-football/kilmarnock-fc/2008/04/03/alan-combe-admits-clean-sheet-woe-86908-20371380/ Alan Combe admits clean sheet woe]


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • clean sheet — When someone has a clean sheet, they have got no criminal record or problems affecting their reputation. In football and other sports, a goalkeeper has a clean sheet when let no goals in …   The small dictionary of idiomes

  • clean sheet — noun 1. A record with no blemishes 2. A situation in which no goals are conceded (sport) • • • Main Entry: ↑clean …   Useful english dictionary

  • clean sheet —    When someone has a clean sheet, they have got no criminal record or problems affecting their reputation. In football and other sports, a goalkeeper has a clean sheet when let no goals in.   (Dorking School Dictionary) …   English Idioms & idiomatic expressions

  • clean sheet — blank slate, clean record, new start …   English contemporary dictionary

  • clean sheet —  Fresh start; putting aside past errors.  ► “In return for Infinity’s ‘voluntary contribution’ to the U.S. Treasury, the FCC will wipe clean a slate of indecency proceedings.” (Broadcasting & Cable, Sept. 4, 1995, p. 6) …   American business jargon

  • clean sheet — noun A game played without having conceded a goal …   Wiktionary

  • Clean sheet — Чистый лист (оттиск, подписанный к печати) …   Краткий толковый словарь по полиграфии

  • Clean sheet review — Within Business Process Management or Business Process Improvement, a clean sheet review reviews the business requirements of the as is organization and reinvents business processes to meet those business requirements. This review works free of… …   Wikipedia

  • (a) clean sheet — 1. if you are given a clean sheet, you can start something again, and all the problems caused by you or other people in the past will be forgotten. I want us to forget all the arguing of the past, and start the New Year with a clean sheet. 2. if… …   New idioms dictionary

  • (a) clean sheet — a clean ˈsheet/ˈslate idiom a record of your work or behaviour that does not show any mistakes or bad things that you have done • No government operates with a completely clean sheet. • They kept a clean sheet in the match (= no goals were scored …   Useful english dictionary


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