Tips & strategies to become a more successful soccer bettor
Ok, so you want to bet on some soccer action, what are your options? Soccer has an abundance of leagues to choose from. You should have no issues finding a game to put some money on.
If you are betting on the moneyline, this means you believe that the team you wagered on will win the game. In soccer, there are three possible results for a moneyline bet; your team wins, and you win the bet, your team loses, and you lose the bet, or the game ends in a draw, and your bet is pushed (there is no action).
Let’s assume you want to bet on Juventus to win this game. We refer to this as taking them “straight up” or taking them on the moneyline.
To win $100 on Juventus moneyline (-115) you must risk $115
To win $100 on Manchester United moneyline (-105) you would need to risk $105
In a regular moneyline bet, if the game ends in a draw, your bet is refunded.
The 3-way moneyline bet is also very popular for wagering on soccer. It includes the result of a draw. Unlike the standard moneyline, the draw is not a push.
Handicap (spread or goal line)
Another popular way to wager on soccer is via the spread – also known as the handicap or goal line. Soccer spreads are typically set between 0.5 and 2 goals.
If the favorite (team expected to win) has a spread of -1.5, they must win the match by two or more goals to cover the spread. The underdog (team not likely to win) would have a spread of +1.5. This means they need to lose by 1 goal or less, draw, or win the match outright to cover the spread. Basically, as long as they don’t lose by 2 or more goals, they would cover.
Let's assume you want to bet on Everton (+1.5):
- Final Score - Arsenal 2, Everton 0 - You lose the bet.
- Final Score - Arsenal 1, Everton 1 - You win the bet.
- Final Score - Arsenal 2, Everton 1 - You win the bet.
Most recreational bettors typically stay away from the Asian line because it can be a little tricky to comprehend. With the Asian line, you are making two separate bets. For example:
Italy Vs Belgium
Asian line: Italy -0.5, -1 (+150)
Some sportsbook might also list this same line in a different format: Italy -0.75 (+150)
If we bet $20 on Italy via the Asian line, we are really making two separate $10 bets. Half of our bet is applied to Bet 1, and the other half is applied to Bet 2.
Bet 1: Italy -0.5
Bet 2: Italy -1
Let's compare two different results. This first example has Italy winning by 1 goal, and second example has Italy winning by 2 goals.
Like every other sport, you can bet on the total amount of goals scored in the match.
It is very common for sportsbooks to offer multiple total options. Using the above example:
If you believe the match will have at least 3 goals scored, you could bet the Over 2.5 goals.
If 3 or more goals are scored, the wager would win.
If 2 or less goals are scored the wager would lose.
Based on alternative totals, you can also play some long shots. If for example, you think there is a relatively good chance that the match could be high scoring, you could take the Over 4.5 goals at +475.
Picking the winner of a tournament is the most popular of the soccer futures bet. Here are the odds for next year’s UEFA Nations League.
The better the team, the smaller the payout. We can see that Spain is +550 to win the tournament. This means for every $100 bet on them, you would win $550.
A team like Wales on the other hand have never won a major soccer tournament and are not likely to win. That's why they are being offered with odds of +15000. This means if Wales were to happen to win it all, for every $100 wagered, you would win $15,000.
Futures include more than just the eventual champion. You can bet on how far a team will progress in a tournament, or which team will win their Group. Additionally, you can bet on individual awards such as the Golden Ball or the Golden Glove Award. FIFA also has an annual award known as the FIFA Ballon d'Or. This award is given to the best player of the year.
Soccer Prop Bets
Daily prop bets are bets you can make on player performances or occurrences happening in a match. For example, popular soccer prop bets include:
- More goals - Ronaldo or Messi?
- Will the last goal scored occur after the 70th minute?
- Total Corner kicks O/U 6.5
- Total yellow cards O/U 3.5
- Will Manchester United score in the first half?
- Will a penalty kick occur?
The winning team, or the final score is often not tied to prop bets. Prop bets are a fun way for bettors to have some action on the game and keep themselves engaged all game long.
Soccer Betting Tips & Strategies
If you want to increase your chances of being a successful bettor, here are a few tips to help you on your way:
- Price Shopping: When placing a bet, you always want to make sure you are getting the best price/line possible. Don’t be afraid to shop around. Different sportsbooks offer different prices; and they fluctuate throughout the day. If you want to save a ton of time, check out betstamp.app. It's free to join, and all the line shopping is quickly and efficiently done for you. You get updates in real time of which sportsbooks are offering the best line.
- Track Your Bets: Keep records of your wagers and stay on top of what is working and not working for you. Without documenting your bets, it is difficult to see where you are winning or losing as a bettor.
- Bankroll Management: Set your bankroll and learn to manage it properly. Don't deviate too far from your average bet size and ensure that you are always betting within your limits.
- Injuries: Like all major sports, injuries are something that every bettor should pay attention to. Although injuries in soccer may not affect a line as severely as in other sports, they are still very much worth monitoring.
- Rest / Lineups: In major tournaments, it is common for some teams to qualify for the knock-out stage before their group stage matches are completed. In this case, the manager will often leave the majority of his starters on the bench to rest in favor of the substitutes. Such a managerial move ensures that his top players can avoid injury and get additional rest. Such a tactic will also boost the morale of the team by having players who may not have been likely to see game action get into the match. Be cautious of this scenario as it will have a great impact on the line.