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You can't win them all.

This page is about the idiom You can't win them all.


Something you can say after you, or someone else, loses a contest or fails to achieve something (said to make losing seem not so bad).

For example

  • After Terry had lost the match, his wife said, "Never mind, dear. You can't win them all."

  • When it was clear that we hadn't won the contract, I tried to hide my disappointment by saying, "Oh well. You can't win 'em all."

This informal idiom is often pronounced as "You can't win 'em all", with the "th" in "them" not voiced.

Quick Quiz

I looked at my tennis partner and said, "You can't win 'em all"

a. before we'd lost our match

b. after we'd lost our match

c. after we'd won our match

Idiom of the Day

Contributor: Matt Errey