Gooooooooaal! A closer look at soccer's siren song

A Chile fan gets psyched up before the start of the 2014 World Cup Group B soccer match between Australia and Chile at the Pantanal arena in Cuiaba on June 13, 2014. (Eddie Keogh/Reuters)


It's the moment soccer fans pine for: the split second it takes for the ball to hit the net, followed by the sportscaster's moment-stretching confirmation. "GoooooooOOOOoooooooooaal!"

That familiar cry may seem spontaneous, but Brazilian New York Times journalist Fernanda Santos joins Jian to reveal that there's much more to it than meets the ear.  

Santos explains the history and culture behind the so-called siren song of soccer, the surprising practical reason it became popular, and the careful ways announcers prepare for their call. 

"For these guys, it's a real art-form, and they really prepare just like a singer would," she tells Jian. "The perfect goal call, it's kinda like, the one that kind of goes like an arc -- it starts, and it rises, and then it smoothly starts to fall." 


Feel like you understand the art of the goal cry? Let's hear your best call. Record it on your laptop/desktop/mobile contraption and email it to us at Your call could end up on the radio!

Please note: Santos underscored how male-dominated goal crying is, so we're especially keen to hear from women. Can you deliver a cry that would put Tarzan to shame? 

Q's sound engineer (and hardcore futebol fan) Alain Derbez leads by example: 

This interview is part of a special series timed to coincide with the FIFA World Cup -- Q Brazil: Culture, Politics and the World Cup -- which features interviews and performances with artists, thinkers, and observers of the large and fascinating South American nation.

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