clean sheet

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clean sheet

1. An opportunity to start fresh despite past mistakes or problems. I know we've had our differences, but I'd like to repair our friendship. Can we start with a clean sheet?
2. In sports, a game or series of games in which one side wins with the opposing side(s) being unable to score any points. Primarily heard in UK. The football team has kept a clean sheet for the last three games. I don't think anyone can score against them!
See also: clean, sheet

a clean sheet

1. If you start something with a clean sheet, you start it again, with none of the problems or mistakes from the past. The Christmas break has allowed the Government to start the new year with a clean sheet. Given a clean sheet, what would you do? Note: You can also use the full expression a clean sheet of paper. We started with a clean sheet of paper, having put the past behind us.
2. In a football match, if a team keeps a clean sheet, no goals are scored against them. If Ipswich keep a clean sheet tonight, it will be their 27th of the season.
See also: clean, sheet

a clean sheet (or slate)

an absence of existing restraints or commitments.
2003 Guardian Given a clean slate and an impressive budget, I would love to programme a festival…that exposed audiences to completely new forms of music-making at their best and most diverse.
See also: clean, sheet

a clean ˈsheet/ˈslate

a record of your work or actions that does not show any mistakes or bad things that you have done: At the new school, you will start with a clean slate.They kept a clean sheet in the match (= no goals were scored against them).
See also: clean, sheet, slate
References in periodicals archive ?
And goalkeeper Ederson could still snatch the league's Golden Glove award - for the keeper with the most league clean sheets in a season - from United rival David de Gea, with eight games still to play.
If we can keep clean sheets between now and the end of the season, we will win and draw more than we will lose, that's for sure.
To go to Chelsea and get a clean sheet was massive for us.
United secured clean sheets against Brighton and Stoke and conceded only one goal against Manchester City - something few other clubs have done.
Coventry City are among three clubs with the most clean sheets in the entire Football League so far this season.
To be fair, we know exactly how difficult it is to keep one clean sheet in the Premier League and now we have had three in a row - this is fantastic, of course it is.
And while Keates was happy to see his side continue to create chances, it was again the lack of a clean sheet that caused him greatest consternation.
The defender said: "A clean sheet is positive but we deserved to win.
His last clean sheet in the Premier League was nine months ago on November 8 in Remi Garde's first game against Man City, which ended 0-0.
But it is another important three points, a great clean sheet again, one goal always wins the game if you keep a clean sheet, like we have always said, and we keep ourselves in there going into the next game.
The Black Cats have managed only three shutouts all season - the joint-lowest tally in the top flight, along with relegation rivals Norwich City - all of which came under Costel Pantilimon's reign as number one, with keeper Mannone yet to keep a clean sheet in eight attempts since he was restored to the side as first choice on Boxing Day.
AITOR Karanka has brushed aside any idea that Boro's clean sheet quest has built up any pressure on the team.
He said: "As a back four and a goalkeeper we always want to keep a clean sheet.
I'M pleased with the intelligence of my team's performance as we kept a clean sheet against the highest scorers in the Championship.