How To Bet on Football

Betting on football is one of the most popular gambling options around, with the allure of the world’s most widely watched sport and the extra excitement a bet provides making a winning combination. If you’ve never had a bet on football – or even anything at all – then this is the perfect place to start as we’ve got all the information you need to make a foray into this exciting and potentially very profitable world.

How To Place A Bet Online

The first thing you’ll need to do is join an online bookmaker. We’ve got a fantastic selection of top bookies here, all of whom offer new customers free bets to make the deal even sweeter. Once you’ve signed up – by completing a few basic details online – you’ll need to make a deposit and this is just like buying something online, with the huge and well-respected bookmakers we work with being as trustworthy, reputable and secure as any online retailer. More information about depositing and withdrawing is available in our banking feature.

Navigating to your chosen match is easy and can usually be done by country and league, by date or even by searching for one or both of the teams involved. There are loads of different options – detailed below – for betting on football but once you’ve decided what to bet on you’ll need to decide on your stake. This is how much you’re risking and this amount, multiplied by the odds, is what you’ll win if your football knowledge or predictive skills turn out to be good enough!

Just add your stake to the betting slip – often located in the top left or right of the screen – and check that all the details are correct before clicking “Place bet”, “Confirm”, or whatever the relevant option is. Make sure you receive a message saying the bet is placed, often with a confirmation number, as some bookies may have more than once check screen prior to the bet being confirmed.

Some bookies will offer a text or email results service but if not keep an eye out for the result of your match and, if you’ve won, log back into your online betting account and withdraw your winnings! Withdrawals are usually made under “My Account” and are processed quickly and efficiently, the winnings being returned by the method you used to make your deposit.

Main Football Betting Markets

There are a host of markets available on football matches and outright tournament and event betting and more detailed information on these can be found in our football betting markets feature. Many of the top football bookies offer well over 100 different bets as standard on Premier League games so there’s no shortage of choice. Here we take a look at some of the most popular football bets.

  • Match Odds – The most popular football bet out there: a simple wager on which side will win (of if the game will be a draw).
  • Both Teams To Score (BTTS) – A relatively new bet on whether both teams will score with Betfred offering Goals Galore (a special BTTS accumulator style coupon) whilst other football betting sites allow you to bet AGAINST both teams scoring too.
  • Under/Over 2.5 Goals – A popular bet where “unders” means there will be two goals or fewer whilst “overs” means three or more. The number of goals can be changed for different bets but 2.5 is the most popular.
  • Correct Score – As with most of these football bets, the name says it all: what will the final score be?
  • First Goalscorer – Another popular bet is which player will open the scoring with favourites usually around the 4/1 to 7/1 mark. Note that own goals do not count and that you can also back the last goalscorer or anytime goalscorer too.

Football Betting Rules

Betting on football is largely simple and straightforward and whilst there are the occasional thing that can catch you out, in general there is nothing to check or be aware of. Random events such as postponements or abandonments can occur and rules often vary from bookie to bookie but these happen so infrequently they are not something to worry about.

There are however one or two little rules that are well worth being aware of and the most important is that most bets are valid for 90 minutes (plus injury time) but not extra time and/or penalties. Unless specifically stated this applies to all bets at all bookies, so, for example, if an FA Cup game goes into extra time at 0-0 and your first goalscorer selection scores in extra time, it will be a loser because it was a 90 minute market.

Another thing to be aware of is that own goals, as mentioned above, do not count for goalscorer markets, so a game that ends 1-0 with an own goal will be a winning bet for “no goalscorer” in the first/last/anytime scorer markets. Own goals do, of course, count for most other bets, including match odds and correct score.

Tips and Strategy

Betting on football is a hugely exciting, fun and sometimes profitable hobby that adds an extra dimension to the planet’s most popular sport. If there was a foolproof way to guarantee winning I’d be writing this from the Bahamas, or at least watching an employee write it whilst I drank rum cocktails in the Bahamas.

As such, most people are best advised to consider betting on football to be fun, rather than as a way to make money. Only betting what you can afford to lose, therefore, is an excellent tip, whilst never chasing your losses – betting more and more to try and claw back previous failed bets – is ALWAYS a bad idea. Betting whilst drunk(!) or just because you are bored are equally poor strategies, whilst allowing your heart to rule your head is another good way to get poor in double quick time.

All this said, there are some small yet basic steps you can make to increase your chances of winning.

  • Pick a Great Bookmaker – All the bookies we work with are safe, fair and can be trusted with your funds. No point in winning if you won’t get paid!
  • Take Advantage of Free bets and Offers – Free bets swing the odds in your favour and if you only ever took advantage of free bet offers then, theoretically, whatever you bet on you would end up a winner.
  • Get The Best Odds – Would you buy jeans in one shop for £50 when they were available next door for £45? If not, why would you place a bet at lower odds than you could get? Having a number of different online betting accounts means you can shop around for the best odds and the biggest payouts.
  • Research – Nothing beats research when it comes to making a profit from betting. Check the form, the stats, the injuries and everything else and you might just get an edge on the bookies.