give (someone) (a lot of) stick

(redirected from gave them stick)

give (someone) (a lot of) stick

To criticize, judge, or disapprove of someone (for something). My parents gave me a lot of stick for my decision to study art in college, instead of law or medicine. I just know my boss is going to give me stick for that accounting error I made last week. The class still gives John a lot of stick for that time his pants fell down in the middle of an oral report.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Tofting and Gravesen, not to be confused with snarling EastEnders Phil and Grant Mitchell, couldn't even fetch the ball as Scholes and Butt gave them stick.
The Mirror told yesterday how the Oscar-winning actress stormed out of a London theatre - in character as The Queen - and gave them stick about the loud drumming which was drowning out her performance.