You've got to admire the arrive from Malbranque there, Clive


A supporter's guide to clapping at football matches.

The No-Clapper

Used on those all-too-frequent occasions when you are about to reflexively start a Three-Clapper (q.v.) because a player looks sure to pull off an impressive feat, but in fact fails to do so. The hands remain poised next to each other before either agonisingly clawing the face or simply returning to their previous position. Can be accompanied by a Groaner (q.v.).

The One-Clapper

This is most often used when a Three-Clapper would be more appropriate, but part way through the clapping process, your brain is thrown out of gear by the sudden realisation that you can't quite believe that player was capable of doing that.

The Two-Clapper

Rarely used, except in those situations where the temperature is extremely low and to perform a Three-Clapper would be to disturb the stationary warmer air beneath your clothing to an uncomfortably chilly extent.

The Three-Clapper

The most common form of applause. Used when a player performs a certain skill well; dummying past a defender, a particularly good tackle, etc. The Three-Clapper is usually used in preference to a Four-Clapper because play has continued and it is important to retain clarity over which event you were clapping in appreciation of.

The Round of Applause

The Round is appropriate on occasions when the team wins a corner, or defends a set-piece well. Generally used when the ball goes out of play and there is more time available than normal, on which occasions a Three-Clapper would suffice.

The Groaner

A groan or 'ooooh' used to signify a near miss which, if it had gone in, would surely have merited Goal of the Week on The Premiership, not to mention being spoken of only in hushed tones among supporters for the next 30 years.

The Gasper

A gasp or sudden intake of breath which accompanies a free kick from an opposing player whistling mere inches past the goalpost. The Gasper is the precise opposite to the Groaner, being as it is an expression of positive relief, rather than negative disappointment.

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About this page

This is an entry in Stephen Wettone's weblog, published on 6 January 2003.

Summary of this entry

A supporter's guide to clapping at football matches.

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