When a player scores 2 goals in a match it is referred to as a brace. In English the word brace has many meanings but this term comes from the old English language that signifies a pair or two. The goals don’t have to be scored consecutively, e.g. a player can score the 1st and 3rd goals and this is still referred to as a brace.
It makes no difference if goals were scored in the first half of the second half as long as the player has scored two goals it is considered a brace.
Both goals must occur before the final whistle to be counted towards a brace, so any penalty shootout goals which occur after the final whistle, don’t count.
Where does the word brace come from in soccer?
The word ‘brace’, is an Old English word from the 14th century. It was often used by hunters when they shot down a pair of birds or other animals.
Because soccer players are trying to score goals, or ”hunt for goals”, the term brace has transferred over to soccer to refer to scoring a pair of goals.
In the late 1800s, a brace of goals became part of soccer jargon as the game became more popular. Around this time, the expression ‘scoring a brace of goals’ began to be used.
What is the difference between a brace and a hat-trick?
These 2 terms are completely different in soccer as a brace is 2 goals scored and a hat-trick is 3 goals scored by a player. However, both phrases are commonly used for attacking players as they have the most goal-scoring opportunities throughout a match.
Scoring a brace of goals isn’t particularly remarkable and it will occur many times in strikers playing career. If you look for records of braces, you won’t find much information. However, hat-tricks are widely recorded and reported on as they are a more impressive achievement in a match.