cut\ the\ ground\ from\ under
- v. phr. informalTo make (someone) fail; upset the plans of; spoil the argument for (a person) in advance.
Paul wanted to be captain but we cut the ground from under him by saying that Henry was the best player on the team.
Several workers applied for the retiring foreman's job, but the owner cut the ground from under them by hiring a foreman from another company.
Словарь американских идиом. — СПб., Изд-во "Лань". Оригинал: A.Маккей, М.Т.Боткер, Дж.И.Гейтс. 1997.
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