Which is correct? `How are the team?’ or `How is the team?’

I understand that in British English both are acceptable. If you wish to think of the team as a single unit, then you use the singular `is’. On the other hand, if you think of the team as consisting of distinct individuals, then you use the plural verb `are’. There are many nouns in English which can be followed by either the singular verb or the plural verb: government, family, team, firm, and people. These are just a few.

*The family is/are of the opinion that you should stop teaching. *The Government wants/want to sell off some of the public sector units.

Source: The Hindu ‘Know Your English’ Series, March 27, 2006

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