Betting on football has changed dramatically over the years. Every aspect of the game, from corner kicks to managerial departutes, now attract wagering at online bookmakers. Straightforward home, win and draw markets are now joined by in-play betting, cash outs, accumulators and various football coupons. If all that wasn't enough there's an abundance of free prediction games such as Sky's Super Six.
Betting isn't just confined to the top English Leagues! Whilst naturally The Premier League dominates the markets of UK online bookmakers, it's possible to wager on many leagues around the world. For example at Bet365 you can find markets for Germany's Bundesliga, Spain's Primera Liga and Italy's Serie A. These are joined by Albania, Israel, Poland, Sweden, Iran, South Korea and even Vietnam. When football was locked down during the recent epidemic crisis only the Belarus league was available for punters looking to get a football fix.
The depth of betting on a single football match is remarkable. Even for a match such as Kolos Kovalivka v PFC Oleksandria in the Ukraine League punters can bet on the full time result, correct score and half time/full time score. Dig deeper though and you can bet on total corners, first half corners, goals and half time activity. Premier League games have even more markets including cards, player bets and specials such as whether a team will score a penalty. In short if it happens at football you can pretty much bet on it.
Manager & Player Specials
Betting on football isn't confined to action on the pitch. One market that is particularly popular is the sack race. These are odds of the next Premier League Manager to lose their job. You might also find markets for the next managers to take available hotseats at clubs potentially losing their manager. For example Skybet have Mauricio Pochettino at 6/4 to be the next Manchester United Manager (June 2020). Interesting Pochettino is also 4/5 to be the next manager of Newcastle United!
Player specials, especially those relating to transfers, have fallen under the spotlight in recent seasons. It's a questionable market especially when a company like Sky can announce a potential transfer from "one of their sources" and then offer odds of that transfer taking place on Skybet. Quite often these transfers never happen and wagers are lost. Interestingly Betway have recently announced that they will no longer offer transfer markets. We think this is a good move and hope other bookies follow suit.
That said a quick look at Paddy Power and they have numerous specials featuring players. These are slightly better than those associated with a transfer rumour. For example you can bet on who Harry Kane will sign for in the next transfer window. Of course Kane may not actually leave Spurs but you'll get 6/4 that he'll choose to move to Old Trafford. You can also wager on one of six possible players that may sign for Newcastle before January 2021. Philippe Coutinho is 17/10 whilst Gareth Bale is 4/1. Many bookies have options such as #PickYourPunt that's available at Betfred. This gives you the option to bet on other aspects of football and build accumulators (accas for short). Alternatively you can use the traditional football coupons.
More Football Betting Options
A number of bookmakers also offer punters access to Virtual Football games. A new round of matches is played every 3 minutes and you can bet on the results of these games. Place bets such as singles, doubles, triples and other accas in the same way as real life football. The depth of betting is not the same as real life football. There's no strategy associated with virtual football betting but it's quick, fast, and can be entertaining. Just treat it more like a slot game as opposed to the real thing.
Perhaps the best thing - at least from our point of view - is that thanks to bookmakers and football there's now a number of free to play prediction games. The most famous of these is with out a doubt Sky's Soccer Six. Each week you predict six results and if you get them all correct then you win Jeff Stelling's cash prize. The success of this game saw other bookies join in and there's now Grosvenor Goals, Ladbrokes 1-2-Free, 888 Sports Up For 8 and Coral's Correct 4.
Other options for fans of football include spot the ball, the pools and fantasy football. The latter still remains popular and there are a number of games to look out for including Sky's Fantasy Football and Dream Team. Finally keep an eye out for football tipsters and football tipping competitions. Tipsters, especially those who push big accumulator bets should be avoided as very few have good reputation. Likewise be wary of the tips offered by bookies. They want you to spend money and not necessarily win it.