Linguistics

‘Powerful’ Germans to crush ‘unconvincing’ Argentinians in 2014 FIFA World Cup™ final?

Lauren Ward

Using the Cambridge Corpus, the Language Research team here at Cambridge have analysed millions of words relating to the 2014 FIFA World Cup™ in Brazil to find out the words which are frequently used to describe each of the 32 nations. They have identified three words for each team in the tournament to give an indication of how each team has been perceived by media and fans alike.

With their performance on Tuesday, it is perhaps unsurprising that ‘powerful‘, ‘focussed‘ and ‘committed‘ are the three words most commonly used when describing the German team. Whereas their opponents on Sunday, Argentina, although seen to play with ‘confidence‘ and ‘flair’, seem to remain ‘unconvincing‘.

Head of Language Research at Cambridge, Dr Claire Dembry, said, “The breadth of sources we’ve analysed over the course of the tournament means we’re able to give a unique insight into the mood surrounding each team.

Examining the Cambridge English Corpus and seeing how the media portray the various competing nations has given us an interesting insight into how national identity and stereotypes have been played out in the media.”

What about your country’s team? Click the image below to download our Team Talk infographic, and find how your team fared with sports commentators, pundits and fans!

2014 FIFA World Cup™: Team Talk

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