Welcome to the football betting section of the site. Here we’ve gathered a comprehensive list of the basic bets every football fan should know about before staking their money on any competition or fixture, and how to get a good idea of determining good value when you see it.
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Football is easily the most popular sport to bet on in the UK, with a huge volume of games from all across the world being accessible to you to place your money on after the introduction of internet and especially mobile internet betting.
SportRadar valued the betting market in 2013, stating that: “The current estimations, which include both the illegal markets and the legal markets, suggest the sports match-betting industry is worth anywhere between $700bn and $1tn (£435bn to £625bn) a year,” but also explained that football is worth about 70% of that total.
It gives you the ability to fathom just how popular football is around the world, with the volume of matches taking place giving bookmakers an opportunity to ramp up income by offering markets from just about every professional league in the world.
Football betting has a host of different categories and we’re going to give you a detailed overview of the basics here.
Basic Football Betting Explained
There are endless options for punters to stake their money on when it comes to football matches, with a multitude of options both before the game and more recently in play too. Here are some basic overviews of the most popular markets. Click the link for a more detailed explanation.
This is as basic as it gets when it comes to sport markets. Simply picking your expected result on a fixture will yield a return dependent on the bookmaker’s price (which is always subject to change). You’re able to choose either side to win or the match to be a draw before it starts, but you’ve now got the chance to make a selection after the match has begun with in play prices.
This selection has become extremely popular in the last couple of seasons after punters started noticing good value in comparison to the match betting markets. Betfred cranked the popularity of both teams to score up a few notches by being the first UK bookmaker to offer set odds on a both teams to score accumulator by launching their ‘Goals Galore’ coupon. The premise is easy, if you think both teams will score a goal in a fixture, this is the selection for you.
This is a combination of the previous two markets rolled into one bet. Odds are generally higher as you’re banking on a result and both clubs involved to get on the score sheet. This market has really taken off this season in particular.
Double chance is used to cover the backs of bettors who are essentially betting against a certain team to win a match. Double chance allows you to pick the team you hope to come out on top with the cushion of still winning if the match is drawn.
Handicap bets are used for punters who fancy a heavy favourite to get a result but standard winning odds aren’t too rewarding. Bookmakers offer lengthened odds on teams in the fixture, but with the underdog team being given a ‘head start’ before the match begins. A ‘-1’ handicap on a favourite would mean they would need to win by two clear goals for the bet to come through. For a more detailed explanation, take a look at the Handicap Betting link.
The popular over/under market is a nice alternative to the both teams to score option mentioned above. The premise is that you’ll be banking on there to be over or under a certain amount of goals scored in total between the two sides competing during the match.
You’ll need to delve a little deeper and go to a specific match to make this selection, but bookmakers give you odds on each player to score the first goal of the game before the match starts. It’s usually quite rewarding too, but more often than not it’s a big risk.
Any time goal scorer offers the same premise of having odds on every player to score a goal during the game, but odds are a little shorter since they have more time to do so. The difference here is it doesn’t make a difference if your pick scores in the first minute or he makes you wait until the last, you’ll still get your reward if your pick scores.
Guessing the correct score in a game is pretty difficult because anything can happen in football. That’s why you get a pretty decent reward for it. In this market all that’s needed is for the punter to pick the final score correctly to win.
Again, this is a combination of two markets above rolled into one. The idea is to guess both the first goal scorer and the final score of the match correctly, with combined odds from the two single markets. It rewards handsomely but has generally huge odds for a reason.
There is a huge amount of betting markets you can pick up on, with several UK bookmakers offering slightly different odds for each. It’s really worth looking at Odds Explained in depth to figure out where the value is on any of the aforementioned markets from across the spread of bookies out there.
There’s far more for us to explain even with this brief look at the ten most popular single markets out there, so take a look if you’re keen to learn more here.
Of course, the fun doesn’t stop with singles, as accumulators, specials and coupons are all the rage in the online and mobile betting world. There’s plenty more info dotted around the site so take a gander to learn more, and keep an eye out for tips. If you want to learn more about how to bet on pro football you should read the NFL Betting Guide.