How to win money on football bets

Some people consider Football betting an ambitious way to try to make some money.

However, if you approach it with the right principles and strategies, it can make your sports watching experience much more fun and rewarding.

But what type of bets should you place?

What are the proven strategies for stacking the odds in your favour?

Read on to find out more!

Types of bets in football


1X2 betting is a popular type of football betting which involves placing bets on a match outcome just with three possible outcomes:

  • A home win
  • An away win
  • A draw

This is also known as a 3-Way Bet, Full Time result, or Match Betting.


How do you place a 1X2 Bet?

Tips to win football bets

It’s quite simple:

Let’s represent the only three possible outcomes of a football game between two teams with 1, 2, and X, where 1 means a win for the home team, 2 means a win for the away team, and X is a draw.

Using odds from the Bet 365 website, let’s use the 2017/18 Premier League season qualifiers match between Arsenal and Leicester City as an example.

At full time, let’s take an Arsenal win as the «1» since they’re the home team, Leicester City winning the match becomes the «2» and if they draw, let’s call it an «X.»

Going by the numbers, we can see that an Arsenal win has odds of 1.36 being clear favourites. Leicester’s chances of winning give 8.50 and odds of a draw happening are 4.75.

So, if we were to use a 100 stake, it means that a bet on Arsenal to win the match would yield 136 if they actually do. If Leicester wins, you get a return of 850, while a draw would pay 475.

Double Chance

We know that there are only three possible outcomes in a football match:

  • A win for the home team
  • A win for the away team
  • A draw

But there is a type of bet that lets you pair two of these bets into a single bet. It’s called a ‘Double Chance bet.’ It’s a very popular type of bet in football.

A double chance bet allows you to place a bet that either team will win or a draw will happen. You win the bet if the team you support wins or draws.

One advantage of placing a double chance bet is that since it lets you use only two of the three possible match outcomes, your risk of loss is minimized.

However, the odds on a double chance bet will be lower than in win-only or draw-only bet.

Draw No Bet

In a Draw No Bet, there is no option of the match ending in a draw, so punters can only bet on a home team or away team win.

Draw No Bet lets you place a bet only on either team to win. If the team you staked on wins the game you win the bet, if the other team wins, you lose.

If a draw happens, you neither win nor lose the bet, and your stake is returned back to you.

Over / under

In Over/Under betting, the scores of a particular match at the full time determines whether you win or lose your bet.

How Over/Under betting works

football matches odds

Let’s say we have a match between Chelsea and Arsenal. A sports betting site might give you odds that at the full time, both teams would have scored 3 goals or more, or 2 goals or less.

If you placed a bet for both teams to score a total of 2.5 goals (meaning 2 goals or more) and the game ends with a total of 3 goals, you win your bet, but if the total number of goals is 2 or less, you lose your bet.

Both Teams to Score

A Both Teams to Score bet, or BTTS, is very common in football betting. In this case, a successful bet depends on the chances of both teams scoring in a match.

One advantage of placing a Both Teams to Score bet is that regardless of the team that wins the match, your bet will be successful as long as both teams find the back of the net.

Another is that you can cash out even before the game ends. Most sports betting sites will credit your account as soon as both teams score in the match.

So, it doesn’t matter whether the team you back up is currently losing 6 — 0 in injury time, the last minute goal from them would mean that your bet is successful.


In Football betting, a handicap provides a level playing field for bettors to profit from a stake placed on teams with perceived differences in abilities.

Sports betting sites will usually place a goal handicap (which could be positive or negative) to the final outcome of the match to balance out the bias. This determines whether you win your bet or not.

Handicap football betting will become clearer with the following variants of the handicap:

Level Handicap

This is a zero-goal handicap placed when there is no perceived difference in abilities between both teams.

So, to win a bet, you must have placed a stake on the team that scores the higher number of goals at the final whistle.

If the other team wins, you lose your bet, and if both teams come to a draw, your stake will be returned to you.

Single Handicap

When there is a perceived difference in the abilities of the two teams, a goal difference (negative or positive) will be placed on the stronger team, e.g. a -0.5, -1, or -1.5 goal difference.

This is called a «Single handicap.»

For instance, if you place a stake on Team A with a -1 goal handicap, they must score 1 goal more than the opposing team for you to win your bet.

If team A wins the game with only 1 goal difference, it’s considered a draw (according to the handicap), and your stake will be returned to you. If Team B wins or draws, you lose your bet.

Split Handicap

This happens when there is little or no observed difference in abilities between the two teams, so the goal handicap is split between them both.

Let’s say a Football team, team A is given a 0 or -0.5 goal handicap. If you place a stake on that team and they lose the match, you’ve lost both bets.


They did not satisfy both handicaps.

But if the team wins, both handicaps are satisfied and you win your bet.

Lastly, if there is a draw between Teams A and B, you lose your -0.5 stake but the 0 stake is returned back to you.

Research before betting

real football odds

Building a winning football betting strategy is no easy task. Even if you figure out the systems that work, it’s never as simple as placing bets and cashing out.

The quality of research you put in before a match is critical to your betting success because it’s the only way you can reliably predict the outcome.

Depending on your preferred type of bet, there might be a lot of information to digest, but the principles are the same every time.

We’ll try to cover up some of the most important aspects in this section. They should improve your chances of winning.

Team form

After getting a good idea of both teams’ abilities, it’s time to evaluate the team form based on the current state of the players.

It’s always a good idea to look at the current state of affairs of the squad and not their previous performances alone.

A good starting point would be the last 5 — 10 games each team played. Look for important stats like:

  • Number of goals scored
  • Number of goals conceded
  • Possession

Home and away records

It’s a great idea to find out how both teams have performed against each other in the past for both home and away games.

Is there is a historical pattern of one team winning in the home or away matches?

If you’re rooting for Team X to win but notice that they have only secured draws in matches with Team Y, you’ll want to avoid staking on that outcome.

History between the two clubs

Now you need to find out about previous matches between both teams and how it all went down. The last match might be a good place to start, but never underrate the importance of historical data.

It’s quite easy to think that Team X will beat Team Y based on their recent form, but do results from their previous meetings suggest otherwise?

Team news

football betting tips

Most Football bettors know that they should always do their homework on the team line up before a match.

What most of them forget to do is to assess the impact players that miss the game will have on the match outcome.

It’s quite important to take these players into account to have a clear picture of team form:

  • Suspended players
  • Injured players
  • Doubtful players

It’s very important to consider the players that will stand in for the listed players. The following are important questions that require answers:

How well do the substitutes performed in the past?

Do they have sufficient experience on the field?


Every experienced punter knows that player motivation is critical to success in football. Even world-class teams can perform below par sometimes if players’ morale is low.

For instance, if a number of key players are transferred away from a team in one season, it could affect overall team confidence, and as a result, their performance.

Seasoned bettors know that team motivation is a variable factor that could change from time to time and always place bets with the facts in mind.


This is an aspect of sports betting that is often overlooked. It’s critical to know the schedule of both teams.

These days, many matches in a season are rotated — for example in the EPL because there is no break in the winter.

It’s important to stay abreast of upcoming fixtures at all times to enable you to predict the starting line-ups.

Common football betting mistakes

How to win money on football bets

Although there are many available resources for punters to make sound decisions on all aspects of football betting, many still make regular mistakes that hinder their success.

We’ll be outlining some of the most typical pitfalls that football bettors often fail to identify and how you can avoid making the same mistakes.

Keep reading to find out more.

Misunderstanding value

Many football bettors misunderstand the concept of value. It isn’t as straightforward as placing a stake on a Football team with a long history of wins against one that has been conceding goals recently.

Value isn’t an opinion either, but the correct interpretation of data, models and trends between two opposing teams to make an accurate prediction of the outcome of a game.

Understanding value properly will help you place more informed and successful bets.

Betting with emotion

Most football bettors are firstly passionate about the game and enjoy watching it.

They are into sports betting primarily because they enjoy watching it, and that’s okay. But the mistake many make is staking on a particular team to win simply because they love that team.

Football is a highly variable sport — a big team could be on a winning streak this week and lose to a smaller team the next. Never place bets based on emotions, but on facts and trends.

Following the crowd

Many bettors follow public sentiment when placing bets. They think that placing the same kind of bets as the majority somehow increase their chances of success.

But this is a disastrous betting strategy for two because:

  • Most people that bet on Football lose more money than they gain
  • When the majority places bets on a particular outcome the value of the odds drops

Sticking with losing systems

Finally, one of the most common mistakes in sports bettors is sticking with losing systems.

You won’t believe how many people still hang on to betting strategies that just don’t work. Why they simply won’t stop using them is a story for another day.

However, note that there isn’t a single football betting strategy that works all the time. Even proven strategies sometimes disappoint us.

Your ability to persevere and focus on the big picture is what will increase your chances of success at the end of the day.