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A Beginner’s Guide to Football Betting

Football is the most popular sport in the world. There are a huge number of leagues, many of them world famous such as the English Premier League, the Spanish La Liga, the Italian Serie A, the German Bundesliga, as well as competitions such as the Champions League and World Cup. As such, there are masses of matches taking place and a huge number of different betting opportunities. In this guide, we will cover the basics to help you get started betting on football, no matter what league or competition you are interested in.

Football Betting Markets

There are a vast number of betting markets available on every football match, so many that it can seem a little intimidating. You can bet on every aspect of a match and even on many different aspects of a football season as a whole. Once you start looking at the individual betting markets, you will soon realise that the vast majority are self-explanatory and very straightforward. Here we will explain the most popular types of football betting.

Match Bet

This is the most straightforward type of bet that you can place. It is a bet on which team will win a match or a draw. You simply bet on the home team to win, the away team to win, or a draw. It is important to remember that match markets are based on the result at the end of the regular time, which will include injury and stoppage time, but not extra time, penalty shootouts or a golden goal.

Asian Handicap

Asian Handicap betting is a type of bet that is unique to football. The favourite team is given a handicap that they must overcome, but the bet is designed so as to eliminate the possibility of a draw. Each team is given a plus or minus number that represents their handicap. It can be whole-goal handicap, such as -2 or a half-goal, such as -0.5.

For example, if Team A is -1 and Team B is +2, these figures are then applied to the score. If Team A wins by at least 2 goals then they will win the bet. If Team B lose by 3 goals or more, then they lose the bet.

Another example with half-goal handicaps may be Team A -1.5 and Team B +1.5. This means that Team A need to win by at least two goals to win, while Team B need to lose by no more than 1 goal.

European Handicap

This is similar to Asian Handicap betting, but it only ever uses whole numbers and it allows for the possibility of draws. For example, Team A -1, Draw -1, Team B +2. If you bet on Team A, then you win if they win by at least two goals. If you bet on a draw then you win if Team A loses by just one goal. If you Bet on Team B, you win if they win, draw, or lose by just one goal.


In addition to betting on the result of the entire match, you can bet on the result of the first half and/or the second half. You will have the same options as when placing a Match Bet and it is a great market if you think a team may start or finish a match strongly or weakly.

Double Chance

This is a bet designed to give you a better chance of winning. It covers two of three possible outcomes, home team win or draw, away team win or draw, or home team win or away team win. If either of your combinations prove correct, then you win the bet.

Correct Score/Scorecast/Wincast

These three types of bet all relate to the score. As the name suggests, the Correct Score market is a bet on the final score of a match. It usually has very generous odds, as it is hard to get right.

A Scorecast bet combines choosing a goalscorer and the correct score. For example, you would bet on Player A to score and the team to win 1-0.

A wincast bet requires you to select a goalscorer and the outcome of the match rather than the correct score. For example, Player A to score and that team to win, or the game to end in a draw.


This is simply a bet on a particular player to score during a match. Often there will be variations available, such as the player to be the first or last to score. These markets can be very good value when you think a particular player is in form.


This is a category of bet that sees you betting on the total number of times a certain thing will happen in a match. For example, the number of goals, corners, or yellow cards. The market provides a number, for example 3.5 goals, and you bet on whether you think there will be more or less than that.

Draw No Bet

This is a bet that has a bit of safety built into it. You bet on the outcome of a match, but if it ends in a draw, then your bet is returned.

Combo Bets

These are bets that allow you to combine multiple bets on a single match, which results in far more generous odds as they require you to get multiple things correct. For instance, you could combine a bet on the number of corners, of goals, and yellow cards, rather than betting on each individually.


Accumulators are bets that combine multiple selections into one bet, and they are hugely popular as they offer the chance of big returns from relatively small stakes as the winnings from each selection are carried on the next. However, they are also very risky as if one selection is wrong, then the entire bet loses.

For example, you might see four teams that you think are going to win and each one of them has evens odds. If you were to bet €1 on each of the four teams winning separately and then they all did, you would win €8 in total. However, if you placed a €1 accumulator, then the €2 from the first team winning is placed on the second, and if that wins, the return of €4 is placed on the next team, and so on. Therefore, you have the chance of winning much more money.

Player Proposition Bets

These are bets on individual players to do specific things, such as to have shots, shots on target, to be the first or last goalscorer, to be booked, to be sent off, and so on. The markets will vary from match to match, but they can be a huge amount of fun, and are certainly worth looking at.

Next Manager and Player Odds

These are markets that do not relate to a specific game, but rather to events that take place outside of the matches. For example, you may be able to bet on the Next Manager to be Sacked, or where a player will move to next, or who will win the Premier League Golden Boot. You will find these markets in the Outrights section. The odds are updated throughout the season, and they are a great way of keeping some betting action going at all times.

In-Play Betting

In-Play or Live betting is hugely exciting. It allows you to bet on a football match as the game is taking place. In addition to many of the markets explained above, you can also bet on the next team or player to score, the next to be sent off, the next corner, the next throw-in, and so on. The odds are updated as the match progresses, giving you the chance to spot some exciting opportunities.

What to Consider When Betting on Football

As any football fan will tell you, surprises and upsets happen all the time, which means that there is no such thing as a completely safe bet. However, the more research you are able to do, the better your chances will be of placing a winning bet.

This of course means that you should follow your chosen league carefully. You need to be aware of the respective forms of the teams playing in a game as well as up to date on any player news, injuries, suspensions, and so on.

In addition to looking at a team’s recent results, you can also research the head-to-head history between the teams. While it does not offer a guarantee, it can give a good indication of how a match may go.

Similarly, you should look at a team’s home and away record, as well as their recent schedule. If they have been playing a lot of matches, then they may be fatigued and this could affect their performance. Furthermore, if they have had to travel a long distance for a game, then this too can have an effect.

In addition to watching as much football as possible, you should also try to stay on top of the news. While newspapers are not always the best source of information, they are a very valuable tool and can provide insights simply because reporters will often have better sources and access to information.

Betting on football is a huge amount of fun and armed with the knowledge from this guide, you will hopefully soon be placing a number of highly successful bets.

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