What Soccer NUTMEG MEANS
(It's embarassing)

You've heard the term nutmeg before but what does it mean to be nutmegged  in soccer.

Nutmeg is a term that's been around for a long time, reportedly since the 1870s. The word came from a time when there was a common practice to export nutmeg from America to England. Dishonest exporters would substitute replicas of nutmeg that were made of wood and deceive the other merchants. You were said to have been nutmegged if you were deceived and it became embarrassing for the victim.

Soccer nutmeg exampleThe nutmeg soccer move

A soccer nutmeg is when the player possessing the ball tricks the defender and passes the ball between his legs. It's a skill used mostly in soccer, but can be accomplished in basketball and hockey too. To be nutmegged is considered to be embarrassing because it makes the defender look foolish having the offensive player essentially dribbling or passing the ball directly underneath the defender, between her legs.

Repeatedly nutmegging isn't a good tactic in soccer because it can be perceived as showboating and can inspire the opponent to retaliate with extra effort and emotion. Used occasionally, successful nutmegging can be an effective way to keep your opponent off balance and give your team an advantage at key moments in the soccer game.


Watch this quick video clip of a successful nutmeg


How do you nutmeg someone in soccer?

The soccer nutmeg is usually preceded by a dribbling move that sets it up. Some of the different variations of the nutmeg in soccer are named after the professional soccer players that mastered their own version of the soccer nutmeg.

Neymar da Silva Santos Júnior, known as Neymar, is credited with performing over a dozen successful nutmegs. During his soccer career Ronaldinho was the undisputed king of the nutmeg.  Here's the list of the top 5 soccer nutmegging players in Europe's top 5 soccer league's. 

On the flip side, here's the talented USA Women's Team's Tobin Heath accomplishing a double nutmeg against Canada. This short video below is worth watching!

Tobin Heath of the USA doing back-to-back nutmegs against Canada
And then showing off her other amazing skills


The nutmeg move is an effective way for soccer players to advance the ball forward past an opponent if used in moderation. It's one of the basic soccer moves that can be taught to young soccer players and improved upon as they grow and develop their soccer game.

The nutmeg in soccer can be integrated into fun and entertaining games for even the youngest of soccer players. This will help build the confidence a child needs to try the nutmeg move in a regular soccer match if the opportunity presents itself.

In addition to the term soccer nutmeg there are many other soccer phrases and words that are good to know. I hope you found this short post was helpful. See more helpful posts listed below my signature. Keep it fun and inspire a child today!

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Coach Bruce Lovelace started playing soccer in 1974 when, as a young boy, he constructed his own makeshift soccer goal. He played in high school, then intramurally in college and beyond. He started to coach his own children in the 1990s and then ran a Soccer Shots franchise for 12 years. Now, Coach Bruce publishes the soccer-for-kids.com website. You can also get lots of great ideas on Soccer-For-Kids PinterestFind out about what Inspired this website.


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Soccer nutmeg on Pinterest

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