Meaning of “goal” in the English Dictionary

"goal" in British English

See all translations

goalnoun [ C ]

uk /ɡəʊl/ us /ɡoʊl/

goal noun [ C ] (SPORT)

A2 an area on a playing field, that usually has two posts with a net fixed behind them, where players try to send the ball in order to score in sports such as football and hockey:

Black kicked/headed the ball into/towards the goal.

A2 a point scored in some sports, such as football and hockey, when a player gets the ball into this area:

Brazil won by three goals to one.
Only one goal was scored in the entire match.
be/play in goal UK

to be the player who tries to prevent the other team from scoring goals:

Who is playing in goal for Milan this evening?
an open goal

a goal area that has been left without any defenders:

Young rolled the ball across the six-yard box for Rooney to tap the ball into the open goal.

More examples

  • Whenever their team scored a goal, they leaped up and down clanking their beer cans together.
  • It was Johansson who scored the all-important goal shortly before half-time.
  • Coventry had a goal disallowed for offside.
  • He scored a spectacular goal in the second half.
  • He scored three goals in quick succession.

goal noun [ C ] (AIM)

B1 an aim or purpose:

Our goal is for the country to be fully independent within two years.
They have set themselves a series of goals to achieve by the end of the month.
Do you think I'll be able to achieve my goal of losing five kilos before the summer?

More examples

  • We must ensure that we do not set ourselves goals that are not attainable.
  • They have set themselves a series of goals to achieve by the end of the month.
  • The protection of the Antarctic from commercial exploitation is an important goal of environmentalists.
  • Our goal is for the country to be fully independent within two years.
  • Some economists think that full employment in Europe is an unattainable goal.

(Definition of “goal” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"goal" in American English

See all translations

goalnoun [ C ]

us /ɡoʊl/

goal noun [ C ] (GAME)

(in many sports) a point scored when a player sends a ball or other object into a particular area of play or into a netted structure that is defended by the opposing team:

Lanzo missed scoring a goal by inches.

In some sports, a goal is also the area or netted structure into which a player sends a ball or other object in order to score a point.

goal noun [ C ] (AIM)

an aim or purpose:

My goal is to lose ten pounds before the summer.

(Definition of “goal” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"goal" in Business English

See all translations

goalnoun [ C ]

uk /ɡəʊl/ us

a purpose, or something that you want to achieve:

set (sb) a goal The sales team have set themselves a series of goals to achieve by the end of the month.
reach/achieve a goal Are the changes helping the organization achieve its goals or hindering progress?
an achievable goal

(Definition of “goal” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

Blogs about "goal"