Little over two decades ago, soccer — particularly men’s soccer — remained a relative niche sport in the United States. Flash forward to the present and the situation could not be more different. The USWNT are one of the best-known teams on the planet and the domestic game is looking similarly rosy.
The MLS has exploded in prominence since being established in 1994. Now, the league is set to expand to 30 teams across the US and Canada with many top stars such as Gonzalo Higuain, Blaise Matuidi and Victor Wanyama plying their trade in the competition.
As the sport has boomed in popularity, people’s desire to bet on the outcome online has also increased. With the Copa America and European Championships to come this summer, it is the perfect time to get into betting on the Beautiful Game if you have not already. To help you get started we have compiled a one-stop guide to everything you need to know. Let’s kick off.
Before you can enter the wonderful world of soccer betting online, you need to choose a sportsbook. For first time players, knowing what to look for in a reliable betting site can seem intimidating. It needn’t be though.
The first thing to check before considering a sportsbook is whether it is licensed to operate in your state. Finding this information could be easier. What you are looking for is proof that it has obtained a license from whichever body handles gaming regulations in your location. This will usually be at the bottom of the landing page of the sportsbook but if you ever have any queries simply fire them over a message.
After determining which sportsbooks are safe to use, your next task is sifting through the litany of sign up offers. Competition for new users is fierce so betting sites may attempt to gain your custom with promises of free bets, deposit boosts and other rewards. Do not commit to the first offer you see. Although it may look unbeatable, it is very possible that you will stumble on a better welcome bonus soon after.
Checking out a sportsbook’s odds is also important. The best way to do this is by using an overround calculator. Anything under 110% is acceptable but the closer to 100% the better. Customer service, depth of markets and usability of the sportsbook’s website and app are key as well.
To save yourself some time we recommend checking out a series of bookmaker reviews. This way you can avoid having to test out all of these factors yourself.
Soccer betting in its simplest form involves selecting which team you think will win a standalone match or competition. For the former you can also bet on the game finishing in a draw. Matches that feature extra time are normally paid out after 90 minutes unless specified.
If you are looking for an outright market with a twist, Double Chance could be the one for you. In many soccer games there is an overwhelming favourite which can skew the odds significantly. If you wish to back the underdog while hedging your bets slightly by placing a Double Chance bet which covers two as opposed to one of the outcomes. For instance, back an away underdog with a 2X bet and a draw and a win would pay out.
Draw No Bet is another outright option for bettors. Here the draw outcome is removed, meaning you can only wager a home or away win. If the scores do finish level your stake is returned. It can be a good way to bet on a tight game.
The best thing about any soccer game is the goals. Therefore, it is not surprising that many players like to bet on exactly this.
The possibilities are endless with goals betting. Betting on the exact scoreline, Over/Under goals and whether or not there will be goals in both halves are all options. Player markets are available as well. First, last and anytime goalscorer odds are available at all sportsbooks, giving bettors plenty of options to explore.
Although accumulator betting is not limited to soccer odds, it is the sport for which it is best known. It refers to combining lots of smaller bets together in order to increase your odds. It can be a great way to boost your potential winnings, although if one of your bets does not come in then your entire coupon is bust.
In the past, accumulators have earned players massive windfalls. Back in 2001 a roofer from Staffordshire, England won £500,000 by placing 30p on a 1.6m to one bet. The 15-fold accumulator had a 0.0000006% chance of coming in.
No matter which of these markets you choose, there are a few tips that can help to maximise your chances of securing a win.
First and foremost, research is absolutely vital. Before betting on any game you should look up any team news as well as each team’s recent form. Analysing the stats for each team — such as goals, clean sheets and possession — can be helpful as well. Looking at betting tips is another good idea, though you should not be limited by these predictions.
Keeping your eye out for any special offers and promotions is another way to make the most out of your money.