Sie wurden verprügelt.

In what contexts is it possible to use this word? Does this mean only that a person got physically beaten up? Or can you use it in sports, to mean that a team lost really badly? Or can you use it more broadly like, say, in a political election?

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The other contexts you mention are imaginable but uncommon. In a political context you’d say ‘er/sie hat/haben viel einstecken müssen/Prügel bekommen für…’, in sports that wouldn’t be common as well.

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