On Wikipedia, I see a few options that can be used for the Italian word "rovesciata":

  1. Bicycle kick
  2. Overhead kick
  3. Scissors kick

The 1st and 3rd expressions exist in Oxford's dictionary, but the 2nd one doesn't. In addition, the origin of "bicycle kick" refers to an American newspaper.

I also searched on BBC, but it didn't hint much.

Which one is the most common expression in the UK?

  • 1
    Overhead kick is the one I hear the most in the UK, but I hear the other 2 sometimes. So, 2 is most common, then 1, and 3 is the least common (at least from my experience).
    – millman97
    Nov 30, 2017 at 13:26
  • 1
    I once saw Jimmy Greaves execute a scissors kick that was not an overhead kick. Dec 2, 2017 at 17:27
  • However I didn't explicitly mention before, Wikipedia was included in my research. I accepted one answer because of The Telegraph and BBC references. I don't think that they are commonly-available references.
    – user244475
    Dec 2, 2017 at 18:29
  • No they are not, and the question should be reopened.
    – user 66974
    Dec 2, 2017 at 18:30

1 Answer 1


All the given definitions fit, according to Wikipedia:

A bicycle kick, also known as an overhead kick or scissors kick, is a physical move in association football. It is achieved by throwing the body backward up into the air, making a shearing movement with the lower limbs to get one leg in front of the other in order to strike an airborne ball rearwards above head level, without resting on the ground.

enter image description here

The term "bicycle kick" describes the action of the legs while the body is in mid-air, resembling the pedalling of a bicycle. The manoeuvre is also called an "overhead kick", which refers to the ball being kicked above the head or a "scissors kick", reflecting the movement of two scissor blades coming together. Some authors differentiate the "scissors kick" as similar to a bicycle kick, but done sideways or at an angle; other authors consider them to be the same move.

From The Telegraph:

Zlatan Ibrahimovic claims bicycle kick against England is not the best goal he has ever scored.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic claimed that his extraordinary scissor-kick fourth goal wasn't even the best of the night as Sweden beat England 4-2 in an international friendly.

From BBC.com

South African goalkeeper scores 96th-minute overhead kick

  • Wikipedia has no clue on the most common expression in the UK, but The Telegraph and BBC have. I concluded that none of them is significantly dominant in use.
    – user244475
    Dec 2, 2017 at 18:13
  • @ahmedus - Yes, you can check also on other UK sources, all three variants are common. Probably the point is if they differ from an “execution” perspective as suggested above.
    – user 66974
    Dec 2, 2017 at 18:29

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.