Football Articles and Guides

football guidesFootball is the most watched and bet on sport in the entire world. With more interest in the beautiful game than ever before and a global audience to cater for the number of betting options associated with football can sometimes feel daunting. At we don't just list bookie football offers we also explain how to bet on football with guides and articles on bet types such as both teams to score and more. We talk about the history of football as well as where and when to find the major events, when to expect major offers and how to get them, betting strategies as well as general interest and trivia.

Take a look at our football sports betting guide. If you don't find what your looking for in there you will likely find it here. Our expert guides make sure you the punter get the most value out of your football wagers.

Football Bookmakers

bookiesEvery UK bookie provide a book for football betting, this however by no means that you should place your footy bets with any old betting site. In our football betting guide we recommend the best footy bookmakers for your needs, whether that be for offers and deals, odds, market depth, live streaming, live betting and more. Make sure you are always getting the best possible value from your football wagers with

How To Bet on Football

footballOur detailed guide on how to bet on football describes all of the betting markets and lines you can expect to find both pre-event and in play. Whether you want to place a simple win single, accumulator, goalscorer, correct score bet, scorecast and more we give you information not just on what's available but how to get the best value out of these bets. A the bottom of the page there is a full guide to bet types and how to place them.

Major Tournaments, Events and Matches

topracesThe best offers and deals on football are available for the top events and tournaments. We list all the major matches and championships to look out for split into major international, European and UK club football. Whether it is the World Cup, the Africa Cup of Nations or the UK domestic League cup find the details in our football events guide. Scroll up and down to find more on where to watch with live streaming and in play markets.

Top Ten Most Popular Football Bets

top 10There are literally thousands of different bets you can place on a game of football these days with an online bookmaker.  The number of options has exploded, especially with features such as bet builders where you can create your own bets.  Still, it seems the old ones remain the best and punters mostly still bet on the classic markets like the result, both teams to score, correct score and goalscorer.  On our page we run through the top 10 most popular footy bets.

Both Teams To Score Betting Guide

bttsThe both teams to score market in football and other low scoring sports has exploded in the last few years. A major reason for this is the extra value that these bets can add on their own or when combined with a win. Bookies are competitive on this line so you can be sure to get great odds and offers. In our BTTS guide we discuss how to get the best out of these bets, how often both teams actually score, betting strategies, common rules and more.

First, Last & Anytime Goalscorer Betting Explained

fgsFirst goalscorer and other goal scorer betting markets represent the second most popular football bet. This means cracking prices, great deals and good returns. In our guide you can find out about the relative merits of the different bet types, the best goalscorer bookies as well as strategies to get the best value out of your wagers. We also discuss the rules of own goals, substitutes, red cards and no goal scorer vs 0-0 betting.

The Chances Of Scoring A First, Last, Anytime Goal

football tacticsEveryone has a 'feeling' on who they think will score the first, last or anytime goal in a match.  These markets are quite emotive and loved by fans and consequently are one of the most popular betting markets for football.  Goalscorer markets are however hard to price for betting companies and this means generally poor value odds, therefore, we look at the actual chances of scoring various types of goals to help you decide if the odds you are offered are fair or not.

How To Calculate Goalscorer Odds Margins

ball in back of football netThere are more offers for goalscorer markets than any other football bet and that should tell you something about them, they are generally poor value high margin bets.  This is because they are complicated, there are 22 players on the pitch but there are other players that could come on as a substitute and score, this makes calculating margins almost impossible.  What you can guarantee is they are high, which is why bookies like you to place these bets.  Be sure you understand this before betting regularly on goalscorer bets.

Correct Score Betting Guide

correct scoreThe third most common bet type on football correct score is one of the most competitive betting markets available. Just because everyone offers correct score markets doesn't mean you should place your bets anywhere. We discuss the best bookies for correct score wagers as well as how likely various scores are to occur, what odds you should expect as well as strategies to get the best value from these lines.

Scorecast, Wincast & Timecast Betting Explained

castScorecast, anytime scorecast, wincast, timecast and other related bets can add a huge amount of value to your bet if you think you know the result and who's going to score. Things have moved on a lot from the original scorecast and you can now place multiple types of these bets with various betting sites. In our article we discuss the betting sites with the best lines and odds as well as strategies you can use to get the most out of betting on these markets.

Accumulator Betting Explained

accumulator bettingThe acca remains the most popular football bet of £10 or less.  In the UK we have a love affair with the multiple bet that goes back to the football pools and the fact that up until the 1990's it wasn't possible to place single bets on football.  The acca is a relatively poor value bet due to compounding of bookmaker commissions but by using a few basic strategies and utilising some of the excellent bonuses and insurances available you really can add quite a bit of value. 

Worst Value Football Bets

low valueGenerally the way to spot markets with poor value is to look at what the bookies have offers for.  For example, there are more promotions for accumulators and goalscorer bets than any other markets, why, because the margins are high and the bookies make a lot of money from these lines. 

Getting the best value from your football wagers is more about just shopping around for odds and deals, betting on the right markets in the first place is more important.

The Football Pools

old football pools couponIf you are over around the age of 40 you may still remember the football pools.  The much loved game of picking draws from the weekend football fixture list to win a life changing prize was the first means people had in the UK to bet on football. Despite a demise in popularity in the modern day caused by betting online and the lottery you can actually still play the footy pools on the internet.  Read our football pools guide for the full history of one of the nations favourite and most ground breaking games.

History Of Football Betting in the UK

betting shopThe game of football is far older than the pastime of placing a bet on the beautiful game, although you might not think that looking at the sport today where gambling has become synonymous with the sport.  From the football pools, to licenced betting shops, up to modern in play betting with live streaming, football has in fact driven the betting industry just as much as the other way around.  Read about the history of gambling and football in the UK and how we became a nation who loves to stick a few quid on their team to win.

How Often Does A Football Match End In A Draw?

castNot many people bet on draws in football, generally because most people who place football wagers are doing so because they are either backing their own team or they are betting to enhance enjoyment and nobody wants a draw.  Draws, however, are common as football is a low scoring sport and this is often the reason an accumulator goes down, for example.  Draws happen on average in around 25% of matches, or one in four games.  Here we look at how often games end as a draw from Europe's top divisions.

Average Number Of Goals Per Game In The Premier League

bttsThe popularity on betting on over/under goals markets or the number of goals in a match has soared in recent years, thanks in part to the rise of bet builders that incorporate these markets.  Most people like to see exciting games and a disproportionate amount of people bet on there to be more goals than less, this is also because bets on no goals or a few goals can quickly go down whereas bets on lots of goals still stand a chance of winning until later in the game. Here we look at what the actual average number of goals is in a Premier League game over a number of seasons to help you pick these bets more sensibly.

How Common Are Hat-Tricks In Football?

hat-trickOne of the most popular betting markets in the UK is to bet on first, last or anytime goalscorer and a lot of bookies now have promotions to encourage you to bet on it.  The most popular offer is to pay you extra winnings if your player scores a hat-trick, but the question is are these deals worth it, exactly how often is a player likely to score a hat-trick?  Of course it depends on the player, who they play for and the league they are in.  The short answer for the Premier League is around 3% of the time, but for other leagues it can vary a lot.  Read our page for a detailed breakdown on how often hat-tricks are scored.

How Often Do Teams Score From A Free-Kick?

free kick graphicGetting a free-kick near to the goal is seen as a dangerous situation but how often do team actually score from them? Given you can bet on almost any market these days, including next goal method, player to score a free-kick, etc., then knowing the stats behind the success rate could give you a leg up.  Free-kicks are a lot more subjective than say penalties, as distance, angle and other factors come into play but still there is information to be gleaned from the numbers. We also look at exactly what defines a goal from a free-kick and whether better teams and players score more often.

How Often Do Teams Lose A Two Goal Lead?

2 0 score lineYou've likely heard the cliche that 2-0 is the most dangerous score in football, but is there any truth to the idea that teams are more likely to draw or lose when two-nil up? This is now important in the betting world as many sites now have offers that refund you or pay you out early if a team goes 2 goals up at any stage, so are these worth anything?  We look at case studies, famous examples and stats around the idea that teams are more liable to lose when two goals in front

How Often Do Teams Keep A Clean Sheet?

ball in back of football netClean sheets matter for all sorts of betting markets from both teams to score to bet builders but what exactly are the chances of a team keeping a clean sheet in any given game.  We look at the number of clean sheets by season and team along with other factors such as consecutive clean sheets and how likely teams are to not concede at home vs away from home. Generally it is the better teams that keep clean sheets, but it is not always the case.

How Often Do Teams Win To Nil

football stadium scoreboard 2 0Above we've looked at how good teams are at keeping clean sheets, here we are interested in when teams get a clean sheet and win, known as winning-to-nil. We look at 5 seasons of data and 4660 games to show that in the region of 40% of games end with a win-to-nil, however the more goals scored the less likely a team is to keep a clean sheet themselves.  There is an obvious home advantage, but this gets bigger in magnitude the higher the scoreline.

Does 'Parking The Bus' In Football Work?

parking the bus bus in goal mouthAsk most football fans what they think when opposing teams set up defensively and they will tell you, with expletives, that they do not like it.  The fact is, though, that playing a highly defensive formation in football, better known as 'parking the bus', is a strategy that works for some teams and managers.  The effects are obvious for relegation, where goals conceded often matter more than goals scored, but parking the bus has also become a strategy at the top end of the game too.  Just ask Jose Mourinho.

Scoring Periods - When Are Goals Most Likely

premier league scoring periodsIt is true that most goals come at in the last 10 minutes of a game and this is due to a lot of factors such as fatigue and increased urgency at that time.  There are however other periods in the game when goals are more or less likely and this information can be very useful if you bet on scoring periods or the time of the next goal.  On our page we look at the Premier League and Championship, home and away, to show you when most goals happen, we also break this down by team.

What Are The Chances Of Scoring A Penalty?

penaltiesPenalties are the best thing in the world when they happen for your team but how often are pens given and when they are how often are they scored? Conversely if a penalty is given against your team what are the chances that they player will miss, giving your team a reprieve?  We've analysed penalties in the Premier League to shed some light on the matter and as betting on penalty markets is very popular it is worth giving this some consideration before you place your bets.

How Common Are Own Goals In Football?

sad football in a goal netRarely seen as a good thing the fact is own goals are commonplace in football, occurring in around 8-9% of Premier League matches.  These days you can bet on own goals but even if you don't they can be important as they affect other bets and different markets handle own goals differently, which is certainly worth knowing about.  An own goal can ruin the day for the team who concedes one but they don't necessarily need to ruin your wager if you bet savvy. 

How Often Do Teams Score From Corners?

football cornerAs a football fan or punter when your team is given a corner there is an expectation that they should be able to score from it but in reality what are the actual chances of scoring from a corner.  Evidence suggests it could be as little as 1.2% of corners that result in a goal with corners themselves making up around 5% of goals.  There is a lot more than the percentages to consider too, for example, are corners harder to score against better opposition and indeed what actually defines a goal scored from a corner?

How Often Do Teams Score In Added Time?

added timeThere is a long held belief that more goals come in stoppage time at the end of the first and second half compared with other periods in the game, but is this actually true, how common are goals in stoppage time? This is an important consideration when betting, especially in-play and when using cash out.  Our guide looks at the likelihood of injury time goals in leading European leagues, we also look at why the Premier League has more added time goals than other leading leagues and what teams benefit more than others.

Most Common Goal Methods

football tacticsBetting on the method of the next goal is now more popular than ever, driven mostly by the rise of in-play betting, which is where most people tend to place these bets.  We have therefore looked at the Premier League to see what goal methods are the most common comparing different seasons to see if this changes over time or stays fairly fixed.  One aspect that can be confusing is how goals are actually categorised, which has changed over the years.

How Often Does VAR Impact Football & Betting?

video assistant refereesIn the days before VAR everybody wanted it, now we have it nobody wants it anymore, the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence.  The fact is we now have VAR and it is the most radical shake up of football decision making in 100 years.  It not only can change the result of a game but it also changes the outcome of the bets many people place on these games.  Just how often does VAR change football outcomes and how likely is it to affect your bets, for better or worse.

Dirtiest Teams and Players

red and yellow cardsThere are many players and teams that get tagged as being dirty, but how often is this true?  This is an important consideration when betting as knowing the teams and players most likely to receive bookings no only informs wagers placed on yellow cards, red cards and team bookings, it also impacts bets on things like goalscorer bets, number of shots by a player, etc., as a player that is sent off will have less chance to score.  In our article we look at the dirtiest players and teams from the Premier League since it started.

Evolution Of Football Formations & Player Positions

football tacticsFootball formations have changed drastically since the formation of the game in the late 1800's, back then it was common to see up to 8 players up front with very few defenders.  Over time formations settled to be more defensive and for a long period of time revolved around 4-3-3, 4-4-2 and 3-5-1.  The modern game has taken this evolution a step further, these days the actual formation you read about before a game only tells you part of the story as there are now many ways to set up a team within a formation.  This has, therefore, affected player positions, which have changed a lot from their traditional roles.  This is all important to betting as understanding formations and player positions are important when backing goalscorers, especially.

What Is the Average Tenure Of A Football Manager?

arsene wengeWe all know managing football clubs in a precarious job at the best of times and most managers in reality don't expect to be in the job more than a few years.  What is the average 'lifespan' of an professional manager in English football though and how has it changed over time?  Which leagues sack more managers than others and what is the trick to sucess for the longest serving managers?

Do New Football Mangers Boost Performance?

jurgen klopp with european cupWe've always been told that new managers give clubs an instant boost and club owners clearly buy into this often sacking managers at critical stages of the season in the hope it can rescue a club or allow them to qualify for Europe, for example.  How true it is the idea that new managers make teams win more?  Is it a genuine factor or is it a modern myth that has grown with little evidence?

How Tragedy Affects A Football Team

football player cryingWe can all look at stats and form to make an educated guess at how a team might perform in a given match but every now and again things happen, such as a tragedy, that can potentially have an unknown impact on a teams performance. 

We've looked at a series of high profile tragedies to effect football teams over the years and how this has influenced their results.  There is no clear answer, some teams understandably perform worse whereas others get a boost from the enhanced team spirit and support that often goes with these type of things.

Does Playing in Europe Affect Team Performance?

liverpool playing in europePlaying European club football is the dream for many fans but lots of people believe if their team plays in a European competition it will negatively affect their league performance, but is this actually true? We look at some high profile seasons from both Liverpool and Real Madrid to see if in fact playing lots of European games does influence domestic league results, for better or for worse.

How Do Substitutions Affect Bets?

substitute referee holding boardIn the old days the starting eleven would predominantly finish the game and subs when they were first brought in were designed for injuries only. Things have now changed dramatically and it would be highly unusual if you team now started and finished with the same 11 players as substitutions have become part of the tactics of the game of football. 

The issue with subs is they can easily scupper a bet, here we look at how subs affect different bets and things to think about if you are betting on a substitute or a player likely to be subbed.

Premier League Betting Guide

premier league trophyThe Premier League is the most successful national league in the world, accounting for over half of the bets placed on football in the UK.  The commercial success of the competition has exceeded even the most optimistic visions when it was created in 1992 and it is now the richest league on the planet.  

To begin with the Premier League was fraught with controversy, and many believe still now that the league has lost its soul in favour of commercialism, but whatever you think it is here to stay and will likely only continue to grow.  Being the biggest league also means that every single betting site wants a piece of the action, meaning you can find value when betting on it you can rarely get elsewhere.

Champions League Punters Guide

champions league trophyIt's the richest, biggest, most watched and most prestigious club football competition on the planet, the UEFA Champions League.  The tournament has gone from a side-line competition in the 1950's to the greatest football show on earth today.  Clubs and fans would give everything to win the pinnacle event and as we know this means betting sites take this event extremely seriously.

The Champions League attracts the best offers, biggest market range, best value odds and the best payout rates.  Every bookie provide CL markets but that doesn't mean you should wager with just anyone, read our guides to the best Champions League bookies along with details about format, schedule, history, trivia and more.

European Championships 2021 - Pan European

european football championship engraving on trophyThe Euros is no longer a second string tournament to fill the gaps between world cups.  In its own right it has become the best continental international football competition on the planet, and draws audiences and crowds to match.  The timing of the Euros also means there is not a lot else going on, this means it captivates the attention of both bookies and punters making it one of the best times to bet for value.  Read our guide for betting insights, offers and a full guide to the European Championships.

World Cup Qatar 2022 Betting and Event Guide

world cup throphyThe biggest global sporting event by a long way, the FIFA World Cup.  An instant success since its inception in 1930 the pinnacle of national football arouses passions in all people, even many who claim to not like football. 

The prestige of the tournament means this is the most bet on competition in football and this means it is also one of the best times to get good value from wagers as all the bookies compete with each other.  Read our extensive world cup guide with details not just about how to bet but also covering stadiums, schedules, format, history, controversy and more.

FA Cup Betting Guide

fa cupThe FA Cup is the oldest domestic association cup in the world having been played since 1881.  Open to all of the top ten level of English football the competition has a magic like no other, giving even the most minor team a hope of beating the big boys and attaining instant legendary status.  Where else on earth could you possibly end up with a fixture like Hereford v Newcastle?

People love to bet on the FA Cup, largely because it is applicable to so may people.  It is one of the best football tournaments there is for accumulators and deals, but how do you know who are the best bookies to bet with?  In our guide we give you everything you need to know about the FA Cup and who to wager with.

How Opta Stats Are Used When Betting On Sports?

opta logoA relatively few people know about Opta and their stats and data service, yet this company plays a huge part in the betting industry and can even have the final say on your bet. The company are best known for their detailed football statistics and analysis, but they monitor hundreds of thousands of sporting events each year and record every last pass, shot, corner, throw, goal etc. that happens during them. 

This treasure trove information, collected over decades, is extremely powerful in the right hands, and is used by not only bookmakers, but by broadcasters and even football teams themselves so that they can get a full picture of their teams performance as well as the individual players. Bettors will have used Opta's data probably without even realsing, every time they have used the free stats info or watched the match graphic during live betting.

Player Loans and Feeder Clubs in Football

footballer on loanA player being loaned out to another club used to be an innocent process designed to enhance the player's abilities or get them back to full fitness, while at the same time giving a smaller club access to a quality athlete for a short time. However, while this is still a function of the loan system, things have changed a great deal over the last decade.

Now, players are used almost like poker chips, being passed around the table until they are worth enough to sell on, often making their parent club millions of pounds of profit without them having ever pulled on a shirt for them competetively. Some clubs even have official partnerships with others to facilitate this, while others still are part of multi club ownership groups who act as administrators for several teams and regularly swap players around between them.