If you have concerns about gambling, please visit: BeGambleAware.org, Gamcare.org.uk or Gamstop.co.uk.

A Guide to Betting On Football

Football Betting

Football betting at UK online bookmakers. It's hardly quantum physics as there are only 3 ways it can turn out - win, lose or draw. In recent years it seems to have become pretty easy to predict which teams will win as we're well aware of the strengths and weaknesses of each.

After all, we're always looking at all the info that's available on TV and online about football and it's pretty easy to choose which player will score first or which team will be ahead at half-time. Take Premier League betting as an example.

Didier Drogba - you didn't need to be an expert to see that every time he played for Chelsea in Europe, he seemed to score a goal. Given this, you could back him at online bookmakers to score in every match at an odds-against price. This is surely what's known as value?

Well, not really. It's just an idea of how many people bet on the football and why so many of them are out of pocket after each season. Football is such a popular and nationally loved game, with nearly everyone following it to some extent, that nearly everybody thinks they're an expert.

Football Betting Popularity

Over the past few years football has become one of the most popular forms of online sports betting by far, however most of us still make the same mistakes every time we place a football bet at an online bookmaker or even at a betting exchange.

The main problem is that the odds are usually not in our favour. The massive margins against the bettors means that we have to outperform online bookmakers in order to have any chance of winning. To start with, the odds of a win, lose and draw in a match should equal 100%.

This of course makes perfect sense, but the three prices the UK online bookmakers put up - for example, 7/2 win, 9/4 draw, 4/2 away win - can ensure that the margins vary between anything from 107% to a massive 116% to always allows the bookmaker t make more profit.

Kind of adds up to why they're the loaded swanning around in the big cars while we're waiting for the bus that takes an hour to make a 5 minute journey. The best thing is that you can still bet smart enough to beat the online bookmakers, even if the odds are stacked against you.

Avoid Bookmakers Football Betting Traps

The first rule you need to remember is: ignore the bookmakers football betting traps.

All the bookmaker signup offers and bonus bets are great but when the large online bookmakers put those huge signs in the window saying things like: 'Manchester United to beat Newcastle United and Wayne Rooney to be first scorer: a £20 stake to win £240', walk on.

Of course United will probably win and Rooney seems to know how to score - the clincher is that the odds on both events occurring in the same game are very slim. In other words, it's a no-value bet and you'll more than likely lose your hard earned cash.

There are always bets of this type in local bookmakers but remember the rule and ignore them. If a bookmaker wants you to bet on it, this means you'll more than likely lose and they'll win. There are certain rules that you should follow to consistently win more football betting.

Secondly, forget the bad betting habits you've picked up and forget which teams someone once told you were best value and stop backing the famous people for the fact that they're famous.

Football Betting Tips

In order to be a smarter football bettor we've out together the following football betting tips that you need to remember to hopefully help you win more of the football bets you place:

Try to Specialise in the Lower Divisions

All Premiership teams are in the constant glare of the media, with 24/7 news coverage detailing everything that happens to them. If a leading player is injured, suspended or falls out with their manager, you'll know about it within minutes.

Now think about what you know about Gillingham's match with Brentford in League One?

If Gillingham's top striker is injured the day before the game, do the online bookmakers find out about it quickly enough to change the odds when they've got dozens of other high profile matches to keep an eye on?

Clubs in the lower divisions don't get the same level of news coverage and if you do a little research you can often get the football news before the bookmakers change their odds. Look at the local papers online - they always have this kind of information on their teams.

Always Look to Bet on Asian Handicaps

This can be one of the best ways of betting on football. Basically with Asian handicap football bets the bookmaker gives the team they think will be the less likely to win a head start while the team they think will win are given a handicap which are described in goals or fractions of goals.

Now that the draw option has been removed from the betting options, the online bookmakers have to have smaller margins. In normal options the percentages would be around 107% but with Asian Handicap betting, percentages are only around 103-104%.

These are usually the best you're likely to find on offer. With Asian bets you become 3% more profitable and could be the difference between being up or down at the end of the season.

Look for Teams Playing Above Themselves

Again, we all love the big teams with good reputations and have previously done well.

This doesn't mean they will play well this season. The high-profile clubs such as Man United and Arsenal start at extremely short odds no matter what their current form, while the over performing smaller clubs get underestimated.

Last season, for example, West Ham and Wigan have shown themselves to be two of the most competitive teams in the Premiership.

When the market eventually noticed this, punters refused to believe it, and week after week they got odds that had no relation to their current form or league position.

The league table is a pretty decent yardstick and it you want to win more in football betting then its best to bet on actual results.

Avoid Multiple Bets

It's a common trap and if you go to any UK bookmakers for a flutter on the football do you thin you'll ever find dedicated slips for a single team for the weekend?

Nope - not a chance. Instead all you'll be likely to find are multiple bet football coupons trying to get you to guess a correct-score goliath or a ten-team 'sections list' accumulator.

UK online bookmakers actively promote the most unlikely combinations to ensure they are the winners and while it may look like fun it's one of, if not the worst, types of football bets you could place.

It's bad enough that you have to get their bet absolutely spot on to get the cash but you'll also have to negotiate the online bookmakers margins a few times.

For example, if you're betting to their % of 110% for a single, a ten-team multiple accumulators this means you're paying that margin ten times over. Stay away from these types of bet! Bookmakers don't like singles bets, as you've got more chance of winning!

The temptation of accumulators is obvious, but it's not worth it, good value in sports betting means betting one at a time if you want to win in the long term.

Consider Asian Handicaps Over Exchanges

Betting Exchanges have been well received but laying favoured teams in football isn't always the best way to go, especially if your team's playing against a long odds-on favourite.

When this happens, the Asian Handicap can be a whole goal head-start for the underdog, meaning that should your prediction be nearly correct, but the underdogs lose by a single goal, your bet will be a tie on the handicap and you'll get your money back.

This is one of the best things about the Asian handicap bets - there's a safety net of getting your money back on certain occasions. You may on the other hand had laid on the exchanges and someone else would be pocketing your money.