Definition of behind the eight ball in English:

behind the eight ball

phrase

informal
  • At a disadvantage.

    ‘don't let cash-flow crises put you behind the eight ball’
    • ‘This might put us behind the eight ball for the first couple of races or so, but in the long run it's going to be the right thing to do for our program.’
    • ‘I know I am really behind the eight ball on this one.’
    • ‘It is clear that students from poorer families start behind the eight ball and are not given enough extra assistance’
    • ‘The pay rises are so small people are always behind the eight ball.’
    • ‘They know that they are unproductive and are a bit behind the eight ball.’
    • ‘In that respect, any free independent publication will be starting behind the eight ball, with no subsidies, let alone a historical tradition or audience.’
    • ‘‘After yesterday's performance we were really behind the eight ball,’ he said.’
    • ‘He was behind the eight ball in terms of fitness two months before the season even started.’
    • ‘We certainly don't want to fall behind the eight ball on that.’
    • ‘We find ourselves, though, increasingly behind the eight ball when it comes to recruiting and paying for those faculty and staff because of that gap.’