What Are Football Transfer Specials?
Of all the sports that you can currently bet on, football is undoubtedly the most popular. As well as betting on the outcome of matches, you can bet on scorers, total goals, red cards, corners, and much more besides. Then there’s the long list of futures markets, which include trophy winners, the managerial “sack race” and just about any long-range prediction you can think of. Among the latter markets, an increasingly popular option is the transfer special.
If you’re a football fan, then you will have allowed yourself the guilty pleasure of indulging in transfer gossip. During the summer months, and one month in winter, we allow ourselves to wonder who might arrive at our club to bolster the ranks. We read every square inch of newsprint discussing this speculation, and picture in our minds how the first XI would look if all of these purported transfers came off. We examine our rivals’ too, wondering the difference their promised signings would make, and quietly hoping that their rumoured acquisition of a fantastic player will fall through. Football transfer betting adds another element to the transfer windows and has proven popular with punters throughout the years.
If you follow football in a fairly in-depth way and understand the way clubs go about their business, then transfers betting might well be worth a try. Below, we will run through the list of advantages and disadvantages of betting on football transfer speculation, as well as looking at some of the bookmakers where you can place your bets if you decide to go ahead.
Advantages Of Betting On Football Transfer Specials
Enhanced Intrigue During The Off Season
For a football fan, the summer months can be hard. When 3pm on a Saturday rolls around, it’s just 3pm on a Saturday, and there’s nothing special about it. There are some ways to deal with this feeling of loss, of course. If you usually watch the Premier League or Championship then you can expand your horizons a little. Leagues in Brazil, the US, Ireland and most of Scandinavia run during the off seasons and games are often streamed on betting sites.
You could also develop an interest in a “summer sport”. Rugby league, cricket, and cycling pick up around this time of year and the two most prestigious tennis majors happen during the summer, too. Following these can be a way to forget football. However, if you can’t keep away from domestic football, then transfer gossip is something to follow, and it’s something you can bet on. Every summer brings with it at least one major transfer story, even if that story ends up being about a player not moving. If you have good judgement, you can use this speculation to your advantage
Football Transfer Speculation Can Be Logical
There is no doubt that a certain percentage of the speculation you read every summer is … well, let’s not sugar-coat this, it’s made up. Some football reporters look at a team, consider where that team is weakest, and then decide which player might be an option for them to strengthen that area. Manchester City have been linked with Cristiano Ronaldo several times, with literally no indication from the player, his club, or City that such a transfer was ever likely to happen. A lot of speculation is just speculative.
Some of it, however, is much more than guesswork. Football journalists with good contacts can break transfer stories. Some clubs have a habit of doing much of their recruitment via the press, by leaking their interest in a player and then gauging the reaction. If you can develop a knowledge of which media outlets tend to be reliable, then it can give you an advantage in judging whether transfer specials odds are legitimate when they come up every summer. This is especially true if you yourself have a good instinct for which players will fit in which teams.
Decent Odds Available
If you do tend to be right more often than not when it comes to transfer speculation, then you’ll be glad to know this is a futures market with relatively good odds. There’s a reason for this. Many futures markets are based on what happens on the field, such as a team winning the league, which player will win the Golden Boot, and which team may be doomed to relegation. Realistically though, the league is always going to be won by one of three or four teams, and the top scorer is going to be one of an equally small group.
There are more factors that govern where a player might move, particularly if that player isn’t of the profile of a Gareth Bale or Cristiano Ronaldo. A player can move to get first-team football; they might go to a bigger league to catch the eye of their international manager; they may also just move for a great big pay-day from a team that’s known for big spending. It’s usually harder to accurately call where a player will end up than it is to work out whether La Liga will be won by Barcelona or Real Madrid next season. While this enhanced difficulty may sound like bad news, in terms of odds, it’s actually beneficial for punters.
Disadvantages Of Betting On Football Transfer Specials
You’re Betting On Something That Might Never Happen At All
The former Southampton forward Matthew Le Tissier played 443 games, scoring 161 goals. During his 16-year professional career, he was linked with Manchester United, Tottenham, Blackburn, and Chelsea among others. However, he never moved from Southampton despite numerous opportunities. He was comfortable at Southampton, adored by the fans, and appreciated being able to express himself in a team that was built around him.
Le Tissier’s loyalty is a great example of a major issue with transfer betting; you can bet on who will win the league because someone will. Someone will win the Golden Boot. Someone will get relegated. However, the player whose move you are betting on may just stay put. If you are betting that, at some stage, Player A will move to Club B, that eventuality might literally never occur. It’s vital you keep this element in mind when choosing your football transfer bets.
The Transfer Market Speculation Can Be Wildly Inaccurate
In the age of social media, anyone can start a transfer rumour with a phone and enough followers. An example of this is the purported move of former Manchester United and Arsenal striker Robin van Persie to Rangers.
Van Persie never held talks with Rangers. They never made a bid for him, nor even an inquiry, because the player was far beyond their pay range. None of this stopped a rumour, started on social media, from spiralling to the point where Ladbrokes stopped taking bets on the move happening after the player was backed at 2/1 to join the Ibrox club. Needless to say, it didn’t happen — but the idea that it might got picked up by every media outlet in Britain. As a result, anyone contemplating betting on transfer markets has to be aware of the potential for the rumours to eventually be revealed as little but hot air.
Terms And Conditions Can Be Challenging
The importance of knowing what exactly you are betting on is paramount. Every bet you make is a contract, and the terms of that contract need to be extremely specific. For example, if you bet on a player to move to a club, does it count if he moves there on loan? Equally, if you bet on a player to stay put, at what point in the season can you definitively expect to win?
The terms and conditions of football transfer specials are essential reading if you hope to make a success of these bets. There may well be a cut-off date — such as the date of the next transfer deadline — by which the player must have moved for your bet to win or lose, so keep an eye out for this kind of stipulation in the T&Cs. Of course, if the bookmaker is in any way unclear on these details, walk away: you need specifics if you’re going to bet on transfer specials.
Which Bookmakers Offer Transfer Specials Betting?
As one might expect, there’s plenty of bookmakers who are keen to capitalise on football fans’ desire to bet on transfer specials markets. Some of the most reputable bookmaker brands in the industry offer a range of options in this regard, so there’s plenty of choice if you fancy giving transfer specials betting a try. Below, we’ve put together a list of some of the most reputable bookies to offer this kind of betting, so you have a decent idea of where to begin…
This well-established bookie may not have the most exciting of reputations, but they are a bookie that can be relied upon for a broad range of options’ bets. As a result, it should come as no surprise that Coral offer football transfer specials. At the time of writing, we checked Coral’s offering and saw a few intriguing possibilities, with odds available on Gareth Bale, Paul Pogba, and even lesser-known players such as Danny Ings.
Most of us think of BetVictor as an innovative company, which is why it should come as no surprise they too have embraced the intrigue offered by the football transfer specials markets. At the time of writing, we found over 50 different transfer specials available, which is one of the more comprehensive offerings. There were fewer big names available, but that doesn’t necessarily matter with transfer specials; the futures of the likes of Robert Huth and Gelson Martins are just as worthy of consideration when betting on football transfers.
We would be remiss to fail to mention the fact that we found the BetVictor football transfer specials page to be incredibly easy to use and navigate. If you’re new to this world and want a clean, fresh interface that allows you to get your bearings, then BetVictor are likely to be a great choice for you.
Where there’s betting, there’s William Hill. As arguably the best-known bookmaker in the UK — and definitely one of the longest established — it should come as no surprise to learn William Hill offer football transfer specials. When we checked their offering, we found plenty of big-name options, with odds available on the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Paul Pogba, and Gareth Bale. We also liked the fact that William Hill stipulate that loan deals do count for bets to be valid, which is a nice touch that ensures bettors don’t have to go hunting down basic terms and conditions. We’d expect nothing less from one of the most reputable and respectable bookies in the industry, but it’s still nice to see William Hill are adhering to their determination to offer a fantastic service to punters.
NetBet might not be the best known bookmaker on the internet, but they do have a reputation for being one of the most open-minded. This is a bookmaker who are reimagining the concept of sports betting, expanding into new markets and offering a truly different experience to the punter— so it should come as no surprise that they have joined the list of bookmakers who are offering football transfer specials. While NetBet don’t have the most comprehensive list of options, we found plenty of deals for big names, and a few bets that looked particularly tempting. If you’ve never tried NetBet before, then football transfer specials might be a good place for you to begin.
Finally, a different option with the biggest betting exchange of all. Admittedly, the number of transfer special bets available from Betfair wasn’t particularly large at the time of checking. However, as is often the case with betting exchanges, the odds were particularly intriguing, and could be promising if there’s a transfer move you’re confident is going to happen. However, bet with caution: betting on a betting exchange is a different experience to any other kind of online betting, so make sure you know exactly what you’re doing before you give it a try.
If you find that you have a knack for predicting which players will end up with which clubs, then this unique kind of betting might be a good choice for you. Transfer betting can make the summer more interesting, provided you a) thoroughly research and b) read the terms and conditions . Importantly, though, you must remember that until a player’s name is on a contract and he’s posing with the new club’s scarf above his head, it’s all just speculation.