Hope + will
Hope as a reporting verb in the present tense refers to
future time. Hope also expresses a degree of certainty
or doubt about the future and when we refer to the future in
this way, we normally use will:
- I hope he'll come soon. I hope he'll remember it's Friday.
- I hope this small gift will be of some help to you in
In English, there are many other verbs that can be used to report
people's thoughts and they all express varying degrees of
certainty about what will happen in the future. Here are a few
of the most common:
We most commonly use the will-future with these reporting
verbs in the present tense, though other combinations are sometimes
possible. Compare the following:
- I'm assuming you'll be here next Friday and that you won't
cancel the appointment.
- Experts believe that snowfall in the Alps will be quite extensive
- Joe is never on time, so I reckon he'll turn up after we
have started the meeting.
- I expect I'll be spending part of the Christmas holidays
with my parents.
- I expect to spend part of the Christmas holidays with my
- I fear I'll get lost if I try to drive through London on
- You can be sure she'll arrive when everybody else is leaving.
- I guess/imagine I'll spend part of my time on the beach when
I'm in Cyprus.
- I can't imagine going to Cyprus and not spending part of
the time on the beach.
- I'm just praying that someone will do something about this
oil slick before it's too late.
- I suppose he'll take most of the furniture with him when
he moves out.
- I don't suppose you'd leave some of the furniture behind
for me, would you?
- I wonder if he'll take the kitchen sink as well.
Reporting verbs in past tense
When reporting verbs are in the past tense, it is normal for the
verb in the reporting clause also to be in past tense form:
- I wondered if he would take the kitchen sink
- Experts believed that the snowfall would be
extensive in the winter of 1986.
- I hoped the problem could be resolved, but
However, if the situation we are reporting still exists or is still
in the future and we wish to draw attention to that, we can use
will in the reporting clause with a past tense reporting
verb. Thus, in your example, Nfila, the squatters are still in residence,
they have not moved out, so both of the following are correct:
- The minister maintained that the squatters would be evicted.
- The minister maintained that the squatters will be
(NB: A squatter is a person who squats in or occupies land or a
building without the legal right to do so and without paying rent
or property tax.)
Here are a few more examples of situations with present and future
reference in the reporting clause and past tense reporting verbs:
- They maintained the problem can be solved,
but I see no sign of that.
- What did she say? ~ She said she's
going out, but she's still here.
- She informed me she's planning to quit the
job before Christmas.
- She told me she'll leave if things don't get