Because it is not considered to be one of the “big four” national sports, casual American bettors are confronted with a common question – how to bet on soccer. Soccer betting lines differ from traditional lines that are more familiar to the casual bettor who focuses on football, basketball, baseball, or even hockey. Instead of two wagering options there are three.
You can wager not only on either side to win, but additionally you can bet on the teams to play to a tie or “draw.” Unlike other sports, you don’t get your money back on a push unless you bet the draw.
How to Bet on Soccer – Betting the Three-Way Soccer Line
To further examine the “three-way” soccer line let’s focus our attention on the opening match-up of the 2014 World Cup. Host nation Brazil will face off on the “pitch” against Croatia. The average line most available has Brazil as favorites at -300. Thus, to win $100 by wagering on Brazil to win the game, you must wager $300. If you think Croatia wins the game you can bet them at +1200 to win the match. That means for every $100 you wager you would win $1200 in addition to your wager if Croatia pulls the upset. This is where it differentiates from betting lines that other sports offer. If the game ends in a tie, say for example 1-1, both bets lose. That is because there is also a 3rd option when wagering. The “draw” option. If bettors were to wager that both teams would play to a tie they would get odds of +425. That means if you risked $100 on a tie you would earn $425 if the match were to end in a tie. If either team wins the match, your “draw” wager would lose.
It might seem complicated to Americans to grasp soccer lines since they aren’t as familiar to us on a daily basis. But remember soccer is the most popular sport in the world and the three way option is very standard for soccer wagering. Nothing limits you from betting on two outcomes from the same match as well. In our above example if you thought Brazil would struggle and Croatia would keep it close and possibly squeak out a win then it would be prudent to perhaps risk half your stake on the money line and half on the draw to ensure a profit if your thinking was correct.
How to Bet on Soccer – Some sportsbooks offer Money Line betting
If you still can’t seem to get into the “three-way line” there are books that make the traditional win or lose money line bets where a tie would result in “no action” or a push on your wager. The books just adjust their lines accordingly. They drop in value as there are only two possible results which pay out instead of three. Looking at the opening World Cup Match again, to eliminate the draw the money line moves to -1300 to bet on Brazil. That is a big difference than the -300 which includes the draw. On a standard bet of $100 you would be laying $1000 more to eliminate the draw. There are also plenty of other prop bets which your book may offer including teams winning by more than one goal, and even over/under wagering on each match.
Betting on soccer might seem foreign or different at first but the rest of the world can’t be entirely wrong. It is by far the most wagered upon sport in the world. Take time this soccer season to understand all the possible betting options. With a multitude of Domestic and International leagues to follow, there will always be a game on to wet your teeth and jump in on the action.[hr]