Jugar "al" ?

ULCardFan

ULCardFan

“Juego futbol” vs. “Juego al futbol” (or other sports/activities). Is there a time when either is correct or incorrect? Is it regional?

I have been told that the “al” is necessary because it is describing football, in general, but it is not used here, at least in 5.8.

Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor

Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor

¡Hola ULCardFan!

Thank you very much for your question!

This is a little detail that often causes some confusion for Spanish learners! We have a brief explanation on using jugar "to play" with or without the preposition a and a definite article in Level 2, Lesson 9.7, which I will copy here: 

Note that using jugar "to play" with the preposition a "at / to" and the definite article ("the") when talking about games and sports is standard Spanish. However, you'll hear many Spanish speakers in Latin America drop the a and the article before the game/sport when speaking colloquially.

The conversation in Level 1, Lesson 5.3 is very colloquial, and so it uses jugar without a and a preposition. Literal translations are provided in our courses where jugar is used with a and a preposition to try to make this clear in the Reinforcement activities, but I will ask the Spanish team if they can look into making this difference more obvious in some way. 

I hope that this is helpful! Do let me know if you still have any questions.

Saludos,

Liss

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