Soccer is one of the most popular sport for betting in Europe, with more than forty percent of the money spent by bettors wagered on it, so it’s essential to know how football betting works.
In betting, odds are set by a bookmaker. They represent the ratio between the stake and winnings on a given outcome, usually shown as fractions (e.g., 2/1). For example, if an event’s outcome has odds of 2/1, it means you will win €2 for every €1 you bet.
Every week one can bet on thousands of football matches. Bookmakers provide odds on the probability of the outcome of events within the match, such as the number of individual goal scorers, goals scored, red and yellow cards shown, and corners won. Once the event’s outcome is decided and you win on your bet, you will be paid out the original stake plus the winnings from the odds.
Let us look at some of the most popular types of bets on soccer:
Match bet – This bet is the simplest form of soccer betting in which you pick the match’s result. You can bet on any outcome; the home team victory, opposite team victory, or a draw. After 90 minutes, the result is final on these bets, so the bets are paid out on that. If the scores are level after 90 minutes, then the draw is the winning bet. The result after extra time or penalties will not matter.
Bet Builder – This type of bet has been added recently, but its popularity has soared in recent years. These bets are an accumulator of outcomes from a single match rather than several matches.
These bets have less probability because of the number of outcomes that need to happen. These bets are useful if you are well aware of the two teams that are playing and want to place small stake bets at the bigger odds that can be done by combining numerous outcomes, such as the corners and goal scorers, number of yellow cards, rather than betting on each market.
Player Props – In this type, you can now bet on players to have shots on target, be the first, last, or any time goal scorer, or be booked or sent off. These bets are used by a lot of bookmakers for boosted odds to give more value to players.
Asian Handicap Bet – This bet is one in which your selection has a “handicap” to overcome, and what makes a bet different from other bets is that it eliminates the possibility of a draw.
The bookmakers give the teams a plus or minus figure to indicate their handicap. There are two types of handicaps; a whole-goal handicap (such as +1 or -2) or a half-goal handicap (+0.5 or -1.5).
Let us see how the two work through an example.
Manchester United -1, Liverpool +2
The figures next to the teams are applied to their score in the match.
If you bet on Manchester United, you win if they win by a two-goal margin or more. You lose if the team draws or loses. And you get your stake back if the team wins by a one-goal margin, which is canceled out by the -1, making the result a draw.
If you bet on the other team, Liverpool, you win if the team wins, if the team draws or if the team loses by only a one-goal margin. You lose if the team loses by a three-goal margin or more. And you get your stake back if the team loses by a two-goal margin, which is canceled out by the +2, making the result a draw.
A whole-goal handicap bet offers the safety net of your stake being returned.
Manchester United -1.5, Liverpool +1.5
If you bet on Manchester United and if the team wins by a two-goal margin or more, you win. A win by one goal, a team’s defeat, or a draw makes you lose.
If you bet on Liverpool and if the team loses by one goal, win or draw, you win. If the team loses by a two-goal margin or more, you lose.
A half-goal handicap bet removes the possibility of a draw.
European Handicap Bet – This type of bet is similar to an Asian handicap but with two main differences: the draw remains an option, and the other is that the handicaps are only whole numbers.
Half-Time/Full-Time – You can bet on the result of the first half and the second half or both. You can bet on the home team, opposite team, or draw for one or both halves.
This bet is for the very advanced football fans who have enough knowledge to tell the teams who start and finish matches strongly or weakly.
Double chance – You can bet on two of the three outcomes of the match to increase your chance of winning. The combinations are as follows; home team or away team, home team or draw, away team or draw.
You will be paid out if either of your combinations wins. This bet is suitable for people who want to reduce the element of risk as in this, and the odds are lower than betting on just a single match outcome as there is more chance of winning.
Accumulators – Accumulators combine multiple selections into one bet. This bet is among the most popular betting forms. It is because they offer the potential reward of significant returns for small stakes. In this form of betting, the winnings from each selection are placed on the next one. The risk in this type of betting is that all the bets have to win to receive a payout.
Goalscorer Betting – This is a bet that can be made on an individual player who can score. You can bet on various outcomes, like your selection to be the first goalscorer or to score at any time during a match. The odds of the players scoring at any time will be less because there is a greater chance of that happening.
These bets can be useful if a player is in good form or if one team is much better than the other, and the chances of a player scoring will increase.
Correct Score, Scorecast, and Wincast
In a Correct Score bet, one has to predict the final score of a match. This bet’s twist is that this will be the outcome after 90 minutes of the match that could go to extra time and penalties. The payout for correct score bets is often attractive but predicting the exact score not easy.
A Scorecast is a bet that combines predicting the correct score and selecting a goalscorer. For example, you can bet on Messi to score and Barcelona to win 1-0. The odds on these bets are higher because you bet on the likelihood of two outcomes.
A Wincast involves selecting a goalscorer and the match’s outcome. The odds will not be as high on these bets as it is easier to predict the outcome.
Over and Under betting – This is a bet on the total number of times an event (e.g., yellow cards) will happen in a particular match.
In this form of betting, bookies set a baseline number to a match. One can bet on whether there will be fewer (under) or more (over) than the set baseline number. This set baseline number will never be a whole number, which guarantees that the outcome will be one of two: over or under.
Draw No Bet – In this betting option, you bet on the result of a match, but if a match ends in a draw, then you will get your stake back.
In-play betting – This type of betting involves making a bet on an outcome during an event, like who will be the next player to be shown a red card or the next goalscorer.