Football Betting Markets Explained - Alternative Betting Options

Welcome to our guide to football betting markets. In this guide, we will take a detailed look at all of the different kinds of football bets that are out there. We are fairly certain that most football fans will be more than familiar with basic match winner bets, but we wanted to go a little further in our football betting guide to help you discover some more intriguing football betting options.

Our guide to football betting markets will explain why combining different kinds of bets can be a great way to boost your wagering profits, and we will highlight a few bookies who have excelled at providing a much greater range of football betting markets than their competition.

We will also take a close examination of each kind of popular football betting market you are likely to come across, and we will have a fun look at some of the more amusing football novelty bets that have emerged over the past few years. All of which should help you diversify your football betting and further enjoy your experience when wagering on the beautiful game in the future.

Why Should You Try Different Football Betting Markets?

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We have to state that there’s truly nothing wrong with just betting on the winner of a football match. This is by far the most popular kind of football bet, and we would always recommend that newcomers to sports betting keep it simple to begin with, and then gradually build up their football betting repertoire.

With that said, expanding your betting to wagering on alternative football betting markets can be a lot of fun. Whether you are trying to predict how many corners Manchester City will be awarded, or when Jamie Vardy will next get a red card, it all helps to spice up a standard game of football.

Additionally, many experienced football betting fans have discovered that by mixing up their football bets, they are able to get a much greater understanding of the game, which in turn can help to improve their overall betting strategy. Curious to find out more? Then read on for our thorough overview of alternative football betting markets, as well as details as to why you may want to give them a try.

Which Bookmakers Offer The Largest Range Of Football Bets?


All of the bookmakers who have been featured at should offer you a huge variety of football betting markets to pick and choose from. If you go to a bookie like Betway, then you will find hundreds of betting markets, offering anything from Premier League football to a game in European leagues like Serie A and La Liga.

It’s usually the bigger games between the more famous clubs that tend to get the greatest amount of betting markets, but you should be able to enjoy plenty more options than just basic match winner bets regardless of the league or team you are wagering on.

Be sure to check what classic sportsbooks like Coral and Ladbrokes are offering, while it’s worth noting that newer online betting sites like 10Bet and 888Sport have also earned a great reputation for their wide variety of betting markets. And we couldn’t miss out Paddy Power on our shortlist of football bookies, as this brand have a great track record for putting on all manner of weird and wonderful novelty football betting markets.

Outright Betting

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Alongside predictions regarding which team will win, lose or draw their next football match, many casual punters like to take an outright bet on the overall winner of a particular football league or tournament. Whether you’re taking a long-range outright bet on the winner of the 2022 World Cup, or are just trying to predict the next winner of the Premier League, the outright winner market is a football bet that’s simple and capable of delivering a decent result.

As always, check around to see the best odds possible for your chosen football league. If you want to bet on the winner of the Bundesliga, but don’t want to bet on the favourites like Bayern Munich, check around for outright bets that take the favourite out of the equation. Many bookies also allow you to bet on whether a team will get a top-three finish, plus there should also be the option of betting on the teams who will get relegated from each football league. Don’t forget that top goalscorer is another hugely popular outright bet for you to enjoy.

While it’s tempting to back the favourites when making an outside bet, don’t get too blinded by the odds. After all, Leicester City won the Premier League in the 2015/16 season at odds of 5000/1, so you never know, picking a rank outsider could be an option worth considering.

Accumulator Bets

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Making multiple bets on one betting slip — known as an accumulator — has become hugely popular in recent years. As all of the selections in your accumulator have to win in order for you to get your winnings, then it can be tricky to get this kind of bet right, but if you do, then the payouts can be very significant.

This is a great kind of bet to take on a Saturday’s Premier League football, as you can check the scores of many matches in real-time to see if you end up with a sizeable profit. Anything from Champions League football to Bundesliga betting also works very well with accumulator betting, but be cautious to ensure odds don’t spiral too far out of control, as this indicates a high degree of improbability to your selections.

In addition to this, we’d recommend that you take up any bookmaker promotions that allow you to get a refund if one of your accumulator selections lets you down. These are often accompanied by some important terms and conditions, so be sure to thoroughly read the small print.

Goalscoring Bets

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Goals are the focal point of any football match, and all decent bookies will allow you to wager on many aspects of goalscoring. You should be able to make bets on who the first goalscorer in a particular match will be, plus you can sometimes wager on whether they will score two goals, or even get a hat-trick.

There are plenty more general goal-scoring bets too. From predicting the correct score of the match at full-time, to making an over/under bet on the total number of goals by both teams, there are many options to pick and choose from. So whether you are betting on the chance that there will be a goal from a penalty, or whether there will be a goal scored in the first five minutes, you should find the experience plenty entertaining.

Corner Betting

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If you’re fed up of betting on a team who dominates the run of play but fails to get that winning goal, then you might want to try some corner betting. Betting on corners has become increasingly popular over the past few years as it offers much more variance in odds between different bookies than just a basic match winner bet.

Most bookies allow you to bet on which team will get the greatest amount of corners in a match, plus you should be able to make an over/under bet on the total number of corners in a match, or even guess when in the match the first corner for a particular team will be awarded. While it might be an odd option for betting, corner betting can deliver potentially decent profits if you are able to place your corner bets in accordance to the run of play.

Betting On Red and Yellow Cards

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[ Jon Candy / CC BY-SA 2.0 ]

While watching a player from an opposing team get booked or sent off is hugely enjoyable in itself, it gets even better when if you are able to bet on their misfortune. Many bookmakers now allow you to guess the name of the first player in each match to get a red or yellow card, and it’s a great way to liven up a particularly fraught local derby.

In addition to betting on who will get shown the next card, you can also try and predict when in the match they will get punished. What better way to make some decent profits from the antics of football’s dirtiest players?

Player / Manager Specials

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Plenty of betting sites will give you the chance to make bets on the fortunes of particular players and managers. At the time of writing, some bookies are offering you the chance to bet on whether the Manchester City star, John Stones, will get over 100 senior England caps. Alternatively, you could wager on whether the athlete, Usain Bolt, will get a full senior cap for the Jamaican football team before 2020.

Betting on end-of-year awards has also proven to be very popular. Anything from predicting who will be the Premier League’s top goalscorer, to seeing what the odds are for Harry Kane to get the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award, can be a fun way to wager on your favourite football stars.

Even football managers aren’t immune from being the focus of some of the more inventive football betting markets. So keep an eye out for those bookies offering long odds on the likes of Arsene Wenger or even Steven Gerrard to be the next England manager, or see whether you can get a decent price on Zinedine Zidane to take the Manchester United job once Jose Mourinho has finally managed to offend everyone in sight.

Transfer Betting

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Most of us are happy just to bet on what happens on the pitch, but if you’re the kind of football fan who revels in behind-the-scenes gossip, then you might want to try transfer betting. Bookies like William Hill and Paddy Power have a great reputation for allowing punters to wager on when top footballers might be about to move on next, and betting on transfer specials could be a good way to turn all of that time reading about football into potential profits. 

Most transfer bets allow you to wager on a particular player, and there will usually be options for where they could be heading to next, along with a strict time limit. For example, William Hill were offering odds for Paul Pogba to stay at Manchester United or jump ship to Barcelona, Juventus, Real Madrid or Paris Saint-Germain. Meanwhile Paddy Power had transfer bets that allowed you to wager on whether Eden Hazard would leave Chelsea to join anyone from Real Madrid, Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester City or even Manchester United. While these bets can be tricky to get right, the potential profits can be noteworthy.

The Funniest Football Novelty Bets

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Of course, we have to mention that some of our favourite bookmakers aren’t averse to going a little football crazy every now and then. How else can you explain the fact that William Hill once took odds of 7/2 for any England player in the 2010 World Cup to recreate Paul Gascoigne’s famous Italia 90 crying episode?

While Paddy Power might be renowned for their outrageous publicity stunts and novelty bets, it seems that everyone is getting in on the action. At the 2014 World Cup, we saw bookies offering odds of 1000/1 for the then England boss, Roy Hodgson, to get a Neymar haircut, and you could also get odds of 1/5 for ITV to show Coleen Rooney in the crowd at a particular England match.

Such crazy novelty bets haven’t slowed down in recent years either. Take 1XBet, who celebrated the arrival of the 2018 World Cup with bets for anything from the first team to boycott the Russian World Cup, to wagers on whether Luis Suarez would recreate his famous biting incident. So as long as there’s outrageous action occurring on the pitch, then you’ll have the opportunity to explore the possibilities offered by weird and wonderful novelty football bets.


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