Beginner’s Guide to Betting on Football

By Ashley Salek IN Beginners Betting - 16:18 Dec 18th 2018

Think you’re ready to place your first wager? Unsure how to get started?

It’s easier than you think to learn how to bet - but most of us need a little help along the way. Whether you’re here to make big profits or simply have a bit of fun, you’re in the right place.

Here’s the beginner’s guide to betting on football.

Bet Guide - Glossary of Terms

Let’s start with the basics. How can you know how to bet successfully on football without knowing what all the different terms mean?

So, time to learn your A-Z. Here’s some football betting terminology to get your head around:


A football accumulator (or acca) is a number of different bets grouped together, often across multiple matches.

If every bet goes your way - the odds accumulate, meaning some people can win big. If you hear about people spending £10 and getting a huge return, it’s usually when they’ve placed an accumulator bet.

But, while the chance of winning large amounts is high, all bets need to win. For this reason, it can be risky.

Accumulator Insurance

For those worried that one leg might let them down in an otherwise perfect acca, there’s accumulator insurance.

This is often only available for certain types of bets, or ones with a specific number of folds.

Banker Bet

If a tipster is sure a bet will land - they consider it a banker. While nothing is certain when it comes to football matches, this is the closest you can get.


How much money you have to bet with.

Double Chance

A Double Chance bet is where you win if your team wins or if they draw. But, if they lose, you lose the bet. This is a considered a safe bet, so the odds are usually lower.

Draw No Bet

Here, if the score is a draw you get your money back.


If a team is described as having ‘good form’, it’s likely they’ll have one a number of successive matches.

Form guides allow you to see how well a team has played in previous matches to help you decide how to place your bet.

Half Time/Full Time Bet

These type of bets are split in two. You may predict that at half time there will be a draw, but one team will score by the end of the game.


If one team is considered significantly better than the other, they may be placed at a small disadvantage against the underdog.


The over/under markets are where you bet on the amount of goals to be scored. This is either more or less than a particular number, such as 2.5 goals.

24 Hour Rule

If a match is postponed and isn’t played within 24 hours, the bet is void.

Football Betting Explained - Types of Bet

There are a number of different bets you can place, including:

  • Acca
  • Single - 1 bet in 1 event
  • Double - 1 bet in 2 events
  • Treble - 1 bet in 3 events
  • Patent - 7 bets, 3 selections
  • Yankee - 11 bets, 4 selections
  • Lucky 15 - 15 bets, 4 selections

Accumulators vs. Singles

Here, the difference is simple. An acca is made up of multiple bets, while a single is just one.

Football Betting Games - the Different Markets

A betting market is a specific category for a particular match. These are where you find odds for events on which you wish to bet.

These include:

These are available across a number of matches, from the Premier League to the FA Cup.

Football Betting Guide - the Types of Offers

Bookies and betting sites have many different ways on enticing you to place a bet with them. These include:

  • Free bets offers - one of the most popular sign-up incentives. This might be ‘place £5, get £20 free bets’ for example
  • Bonuses
  • Enhanced odds offers - an enhanced price for a particular bet

All bookmakers have their own specific brandings for these offers. Many also have bonuses that are unique to their site, such as for hat tricks.

While many deals are only for new customers, many sites have long-term offers also. Always read the terms and conditions of these!

Understanding Sports Betting - Online Vs. In-Store

So, should you place your bet online or head to one of your local stores?

Online Betting

One clear advantage of online betting is that you have a greater selection of bookmakers. As a result, you also have a wider variety of markets to bet on.

In most cases, online bookies can afford to offer more generous deals to new customers and give higher odds.

Also, you have the flexibility of betting wherever you want whenever you want.


The odds found in local high street betting stores sometimes aren’t as up to date as the ones found online.

However, you will likely find more of an atmosphere than if betting at home. But, building the perfect accumulator without having to leave the house is appealing to many.

How Do Betting Odds Work?

Wondering how betting odds work? Here’s a quick breakdown:

Betting odds tell you how likely an event is to happen and how much money you could win. They are displayed in two ways:

Fractional Odds

Fractional odds allow you to see how much you will win on your bet in comparison to your stake, e.g. 10/1.

Decimal Odds

Decimals are displayed in numeric form. To work out how much money you’d win on your bet, simply multiply your stake by the decimal shown.

How Are Betting Odds Calculated?

So, how do odds work in football?

When calculating the odds, bookies consider probability, but adjust them slightly to ensure they bring in a profit. This might be an 8% profit margin, for example.

How to Always Win Football Bets

Of course, in the world of football betting, there’s no way to ‘always’ win. Nothing is set in stone!

But, there are some ways to give yourself the best chance of placing a successful bet. Here’s what to look out for:

Follow and Copy Tipsters

If a punter is particularly successful, why not follow their football betting strategy? You can use their profits to your advantage.

Alternatively, take it one step further by copying top tipsters and their bets. If they predict the correct score, so do you.

Compare Bookmakers

Don’t go with the first bookmaker you find, or always bet with the same one.

Compare bookmakers to give yourself the best chance of finding the best betting site for you.

Consider Less Obvious Choices

The favourite doesn’t always win! Also, considering less obvious markets may help you find more favourable odds.

Pay Attention to Match Data

Don’t forget to check match data, including:

  • Form stats across multiple markets, such as BTTS
  • League positions
  • Home/away results
  • Goals scored for/against
  • Fixture history

You can find all these football match tips (and more) here.

How to Bet on Football

Here’s our step by step guide to placing a bet:

  • Choose the football match you want to bet on
  • Choose your market
  • Decide what type of bet you want to place e.g. single, accumulator
  • Choose your bookmaker

Ready to get started building your acca? Our intelligent algorithm calculates possible returns in real-time and allows you to choose from a range of bookmakers to find the best odds for your bet. Find our football accumulator tips here.

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