Soccer Abbreviations: What Do They All Mean?

Post title over image of soccer player

Soccer as a sport is full of abbreviations. For the uninitiated, this can seem confusing at first. Many people love to watch the game but don’t always understand what everything means. In this article, I’m going to put your mind at ease and explain each of those soccer abbreviations you’ve been wondering about.

Whether you’re looking for the meaning of soccer abbreviations in pro soccer, high school soccer, youth soccer, or even on the FIFA soccer game, you should find the answer you’re looking for on this list.

If you’re more interested in the meanings of soccer position acronyms, check out my article – Soccer Position Abbreviations: What They All Mean.

To keep things straightforward and simple, I’ve listed the abbreviations below in alphabetical order.

I hope you find what you’re looking for, and if not, let me know on the contact me page!

A – Away game

A stands for Away game in soccer. An away game is any game a team plays away from their home ground or field. You will most often see the abbreviation A on a soccer league table to indicate any stats relating to the games a team has played away from home.

AET – After Extra Time

AET stands for After Extra Time in soccer. The acronym AET is used on a score sheet to show the score of a game after extra time has been played. Extra time is also referred to as overtime in soccer.

Discover all the details about overtime in my article Overtime in Soccer: Everything you need to know.

AFC – Association Football Club

AFC stands for Association Football Club in soccer. Association Football is the official name for soccer. AFC is a commonly used acronym in England to designate an organization as a club that plays association football.

AGT – Aggregate score

AGT stands for Aggregate score in soccer. Aggregate score is the combined score between two teams over the course of two games. Aggregate score is most often used in the latter stages of tournament soccer.

Discover much more about aggregate in my article – What is Aggregate Score in Soccer?

Apps – Appearance

Apps stands for appearances in soccer. The acronym apps is used to indicate how many appearances a soccer player has made for their club or international team. You will most often see the abbreviation “apps” in a list of a player’s stats.

Appearances are also known as caps in international games. Find out more in my article – What does “caps” mean in soccer?

D1 – Division One

D1 means Division One in soccer. Division 1 is the highest level of competition in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). Division One in soccer consists of the best players and teams from the biggest schools across the United States.

ECNL – Elite Clubs National League

ECNL stands for Elite Clubs National League in soccer. The Elite Clubs National League is a youth soccer league for both girls and boys sanctioned by US Club Soccer. The ECNL exists to assist in the development of youth soccer players.

Discover much more about ECNL Soccer in my article – What is ECNL Soccer and How does it Work? or find out about youth soccer positions in my article – Youth Soccer Positions: All Ages and Players.

ECRL – Elite Club Regional League

ECRL stands for Elite Club Regional League. Also known as the ECNL Regional League platform, the ECRL is a collection of regional soccer leagues managed and operated by the ECNL. The ECRL provides an opportunity for players to develop their soccer skills and abilities in a competitive setting.

EDP – Elite Development Program Soccer

EPD stands for Elite Development Program Soccer. EPD is an organization that operates youth soccer leagues for both boys and girls throughout the United States. The EPD also runs multiple tournaments and aims to develop soccer players and encourage them to attend college.

ET – Extra Time

ET stands for Extra Time in soccer. Extra Time is a 30 minute period of playing time that a referee adds to the end of a soccer game if the scores are tied at the end of regulation time. A game will only involve extra time in the context of tournament soccer.

FA – Football Association

FA stands for Football Association in soccer. The FA is the governing body of English soccer and was the first soccer organization in modern-day soccer. The Football Association created the first set of codified rules for soccer.

Find out more about how soccer was created in my article – The Invention of Soccer: A Detailed History. Or discover how soccer has developed across the past 150 years in my article – The History of Soccer: From Origin to Modern Day.

FC – Football Club

The initials “FC” in soccer stands for the words “Football Club”. FC usually follows, but occasionally comes before, the official name of a soccer team. For example, New York City FC or FC Barcelona. These letters are part of a team’s brand.

FIFA – Federation Internationale de Football Association

FIFA stands for Federation Internationale de Football Association in soccer. Founded in Paris, France in 1904, FIFA is the governing body of world soccer. In English, FIFA means International Federation of Association Football.

FT – Full Time

FT stands for Full Time in soccer. Full time is a term used to mean the time allocated to a game has finished and the game is now over. At full time the players must stop competing and no further action can take place.

GA – Goals Against

GA stands for Goals Against in soccer. GA or Goals Against means the total number of goals a team has conceded throughout a league season or during tournament competition. You will most often see the acronym used in a soccer league table.

GD – Goal Difference

GD in soccer means “Goal Difference”. GD or Goal Difference is the difference between the goals scored and conceded by a team in a soccer league ranking system. Goal difference is often used as a tiebreaker to decide what team finishes higher in the rankings.

GF – Goals For

In soccer, GF means “Goals For”. GF or Goals For refers to the number of goals a soccer team has scored throughout the duration of a competition. Sometimes you will see the acronym GF replaced with GS. GS stands for Goals Scored.

GP – Games Played

GP stands for Games Played in Soccer. GP refers to the number of games a soccer team has played throughout the duration of a league season or tournament competition. Every team in a league must play a specific amount of games before the season is over.

Find out exactly how many games are played during a soccer season in my article – How Many Games are in a Soccer Season?

GS – Goals Scored

GS stands for Goals Scored in soccer. GS or Goals Scored refers to the number of goals a soccer team has scored throughout the duration of a competition. Sometimes you will see the acronym GS replaced with GF. GF stands for Goals For.

Find out what the world record is for the most goals scored in a single soccer game in my article – Highest Scoring Soccer Game Ever!

H – Home

H stands for Home in soccer. When the letter H is used in soccer, it refers to a game played at a soccer team’s home field or stadium. You will most commonly see the letter H used in soccer rankings to indicate the number of games a team has played at home rather than away.

HT – Half Time

HT stands for Half Time in soccer. HT or Half Time refers to the 15-minute break between the two halves of a soccer game. You will most often see the acronym HT displayed beside the current score of a soccer game at the half-time interval.

Find out much more about half time in my article – Half Time in Soccer: How long is it and what in involved?

ID – Identification

ID stands for Identification in soccer and is used in the context of a soccer ID camp. Soccer ID camps are used by colleges to identify the best young soccer players and recruit them to their college soccer teams.

Find out if you should attend a soccer ID camp in my article – Soccer ID Camps: Are they worth it?

INT – International Game

INT stands for an International game in soccer. An international game is any game that is played by the national team of one country against the national of another country. International soccer games are played multiple times throughout a soccer season.

JV – Junior Varsity

JV means Junior Varsity in soccer. Junior varsity soccer teams consist of the players in a college or school that play for a lower quality soccer team than the team the best players in the school play for.

Meg – Nutmeg

The abbreviation Meg means Nutmeg in soccer. The word meg is used as a shortened version of the word nutmeg. A nutmeg in soccer happens when one player plays the ball through the legs of an opposition player. A meg is also known as a panna or nuts.

MLS – Major League Soccer

In soccer, MLS stands for Major League Soccer. The MLS is the highest level of men’s professional soccer in the United States and Canada. Founded in 1996, Major League Soccer consists of twenty-seven teams located across North America.

MP – Matches Played

MP stands for Matches Played in soccer. The number of matches played by a single soccer team is often displayed on a soccer league table beside the letters MP. A match in soccer is another name for a game.

Nil – Zero

Nil means zero in soccer. The word nil is used in soccer in place of the word zero. If a soccer team hasn’t scored any goals in a game, then their number of goals scored is said to be Nil. Nil is a shortened version of the Latin word for nothing.

NPL – National Premier Leagues

NPL stands for National Premier Leagues in soccer. The NPL is a weekly youth soccer competition that takes place across the United States. The aim of the NPL is to promote youth soccer and provide opportunities for both boys and girls to develop their soccer skills and abilities.

NWSL – National Women’s Soccer League

NWSL stands for National Women’s Soccer League in soccer. The NWSL is the top women’s professional soccer league in the United States. The NWSL was established in 2012 and consists of 10 teams that compete each year from April through November.

ODP – Olympic Development Program

ODP means Olympic Development Program in soccer. ODP soccer is a development program run by US Soccer to discover and develop the best youth soccer players in the country. Players are selected for the ODP through a process of open tryouts.

Find out how to stand out in any soccer tryout in my article – Soccer Tryouts: What is involved and how to stand out.

OG – Own Goal

In soccer, OG means Own Goal. An own goal is a goal a player scores into their own team’s goal net. Any player can score an own goal either accidentally or on purpose. An own goal counts for as many points as a normal goal.

Find out everything you need to know about goals in soccer in my article – What is a goal in soccer and what are they worth?

PK – Penalty Kick

PK means Penalty Kick in soccer. A penalty kick is a shot at goal taken from the penalty mark within a penalty area on a soccer field. A referee will award a PK to a team when a player commits an offense against an attacking player within the penalty area.

Discover much more about penalty kicks in my article – Penalty Kick in Soccer: All Your Questions Answered.

PLD – Games Played

PLD stands for Games Played in soccer. The abbreviation PLD is most commonly used in a list of soccer rankings to show the total number of games played by one team throughout the course of a competition. The number of games played is an indication of how far through a competition a team is.

PTS – Points

PTS stands for Points in soccer. The abbreviation PTS is used in soccer to show the total number of points a team has earned throughout a league competition. The number of points a team has determines its position in the rankings.

SC – Soccer Club

In soccer, SC stands for Soccer Club. The acronym SC is most often seen as part of a soccer team’s name and indicates the purpose of the organization. SC is an alternative to FC and is most commonly used in North America, where the sport is known as soccer rather than football.

Find out why the US calls it soccer in my article – Why America Calls it Soccer: The History of the Term.

UCL – UEFA Champions League

In soccer, UCL stands for UEFA Champions League. The UEFA Champions League is a competitive tournament that takes place in Europe each year. The UCL is contested between the best teams in Europe with the winner crowned the best club team in Europe.

UEFA – Union of European Football Associations

In soccer, UEFA stands for Union of European Football Associations. UEFA is the governing body for soccer across Europe and oversees soccer, futsal, and beach soccer. UEFA was founded in 1954 and consists of 55 national organizations.

VAR – Video Assistant Referees

VAR stands for Video Assistant Referees in soccer. Video assistant referees monitor a video feed of a soccer game and review decisions made by the referee on the field. The VAR communicates with the referee about any incident the referee may have missed or should reconsider.

Ben Clayfield

Hi! My name's Ben. I've played, watched, read about, and enjoyed soccer throughout my life. I really enjoy finding out more about the game I love and sharing it with you all. Find out more about me here - Ben Clayfield

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