Kuen,

Please use numbers or letters to index your examples in order to make it easier to refer back to them.

1: They go play football on weekends.
2: He goes play football very often.

It's fairly common to see the construct "go + [verb]", most commonly in the imperative:

3a: Go get us some food.
3b: Go play with your friends.

Almost as often, I see it in the future tense:

4: I'm going to go take a shower.

or with some other modal:

5: You need to go find someplace else to live.

Rarely, I'll hear it in the simple present, as in example (1), but never in the third person singular, as in (2).  In all the examples where the construct is used, the word "go" is uninflected (that is, it is in the same form as the simple infinitive).  It doesn't work with "goes" or "went".

6: *He went play football last weekend.

This makes me question the  grammatical correctness of the construct.

Notice that in all of the examples with the uninflected word "go" (all except (2) and (6)), "go" can be omitted without changing the meaning of the sentence:

1': They play football on weekends.
3a': Get us some food.
3b': Play with your friends.
4': I'm going to take a shower.
5': You need to find someplace else to live.

The inflected form of "go" can be omitted in (2) and (6), but the remaining verb has to be properly inflected:

2': He plays football very often.
6': He played football last weekend.

Also, in all of the examples, you can use the properly inflected form of "go" plus the conjunction "and" followed by a verb inflected the same way as "go":

1'': They go and play football on weekends.
2'': He goes and plays football very often.
3a'': Go and get us some food.
3b'': Go and play with your friends.
4'': I'm going to go and take a shower.
5'': You need to go and find someplace else to live.
6'': He went and played football last weekend.

In all these examples, I prefer the version without "go" ((1') - (6')), with the possible exception of the imperatives ((3a) and (3b)).  I won't go as far as to call any of these incorrect, though, except for (2) and (6).  I don't like the others with "go", but they have gained a certain level of acceptance.

DocV

Doc V posted:
Rarely, I'll hear it in the simple present, as in example (1), but never in the third person singular, as in (2). . . .  I won't go as far as to call any of these [1'' - 6''] incorrect, though, except for (2) and (6).

Hi, Kuen: DocV has given you a very detailed answer, and I agree with everything he says. Lest a key point get lost in the extensiveness of his discussion, however, I would like to underscore that your second example sentence (*He goes play football very often), which DocV has labeled (2), is ungrammatical.

Hi, Doc V and David,

Thank you both very much for your very helpful answers. Can I  use "go+bare infinitive" with the third person singular in these sentences  below and do they sound natural?

1. He needs/ doesn't need to go see  a doctor.

2. He will/won't go see a doctor.

3. He didn't need to go see a doctor.

Thank you very much.

 

 

kuen posted:
Can I  use "go+bare infinitive" with the third person singular in these sentences  below and do they sound natural?

1. He needs/ doesn't need to go see  a doctor.
2. He will/won't go see a doctor.
3. He didn't need to go see a doctor.

Hello again, Kuen: Yes, those sentences are fine. In (1) and (3), "go see" is in an infinitive clause complementing "need(s)." In (2), a modal construction is involved. The point is that you can't use "goes see," "went see," or "gone see." There is nothing wrong with using "go see" in informal English, especially in the U.S.

kuen posted:

Hi David,

What's the difference between these sentences below?

1. Go and get us some food.

2. Go to get us some food.

3. Go get us some food.

There is no difference in meaning, Kuen, but in terms of register, (2) could be considered the most formal and (3) the least formal.

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