Soccer Score Scottish Inlets: A Crossword Puzzle with a Twist

If you are a fan of crossword puzzles, you might have come across a clue that puzzled you: soccer score + ___ + Scottish inlets. What is the answer to this clue? And what does it have to do with soccer and Scotland? In this article, we will explore the origin and meaning of this clue, and how it relates to the world of sports and geography.

The Origin of the Clue

The clue soccer score + ___ + Scottish inlets first appeared in the New York Times crossword puzzle on January 8, 2023. It was created by David Heart, a crossword constructor who is known for his clever and witty clues. The clue is a wordplay on the phrase “Goldilocks and the Three Bears”, a classic fairy tale. The answer to the clue is GOLDILOCKS, which is formed by combining GOAL (a soccer score), DI (a word that means nothing), and LOCKS (Scottish inlets).

The Meaning of the Clue

The clue soccer score + ___ + Scottish inlets is not only a clever wordplay, but also a subtle reference to the soccer scene in Scotland. Scotland is a country that is part of the United Kingdom, and has a rich and passionate soccer culture. The national soccer team of Scotland is nicknamed “The Tartan Army”, and has qualified for nine FIFA World Cups and three UEFA European Championships. The most popular soccer clubs in Scotland are Celtic and Rangers, who have a fierce rivalry known as the “Old Firm”. The fans of these clubs are often divided by religious and political affiliations, and the matches between them are often tense and violent.

Scotland is also known for its beautiful and diverse landscape, which includes many inlets, or narrow strips of water that extend into the land. These inlets are called “locks” or “lochs” in Scottish Gaelic, and are often associated with legends and folklore. The most famous lock in Scotland is Loch Ness, which is said to be the home of a mysterious creature called the Loch Ness Monster, or Nessie. Other famous locks in Scotland include Loch Lomond, Loch Tay, and Loch Awe.

The Connection between Soccer and Scotland

The clue soccer score + ___ + Scottish inlets is not only a clever wordplay, but also a subtle reference to the connection between soccer and Scotland. Soccer is a sport that originated in England, but was quickly adopted and developed by the Scots. The first official international soccer match was played between Scotland and England in 1872, and ended in a 0-0 draw. Scotland is also credited with inventing the passing game, the penalty kick, and the crossbar. Some of the most influential soccer players and managers in history are from Scotland, such as Kenny Dalglish, Alex Ferguson, and Bill Shankly.

Soccer is more than just a sport in Scotland, it is a way of life and a source of pride and identity. Soccer reflects the history, culture, and politics of Scotland, and is often used as a platform for expressing social and national issues. Soccer is also a way of connecting with other countries and cultures, and fostering friendship and cooperation. For example, in 2017, Scotland and England wore poppies on their jerseys to commemorate the fallen soldiers of World War I, despite being fined by FIFA for violating the rules on political symbols. In 2021, Scotland and Israel played a friendly match to promote peace and dialogue in the Middle East, despite the ongoing conflict and violence in the region.


The clue soccer score + ___ + Scottish inlets is a crossword puzzle with a twist. It is not only a clever wordplay, but also a subtle reference to the soccer scene and the geography of Scotland. It shows how soccer and Scotland are intertwined, and how they influence and inspire each other. It is a clue that challenges and entertains the crossword solver, and also educates and enlightens the reader.