All about football betting

About Handicap Bets

Also commonly referred to as spread betting, handicap betting is about giving either of the playing team in a football match an imaginary handicap or deficit that it needs to overcome during the game.

Selections can even be made the opposite way, wherein the other team is provided a head start prior to the game being played.

You only win the bet if the selected team’s score is higher than the opponent’s post the application of the handicap.

This type of betting is usually opted for when the punters are looking to bank on the favourite team to win the game by a certain margin. To give an example, the odds of a number one placed team getting beaten by a relegation candidate may be pretty short. Hence, a handicap or deficit may be introduced in the form of the favourite team winning by a certain number of goals.

Handicap betting normally gives punters a head start for their unfavoured selections. Furthermore, this type of betting is commonly used to give bettors a higher value for their favourites.

However, it’s not uncommon to see handicap bets being introduced in other commonly played matches too, regardless of the form or league position of the teams, simply to add more value to the bets, or to beef up the accumulated bets. Normally, handicaps can be opted for if a certain football team is on a goal scoring spree and is scoring more and more goals regardless of the opposition its playing against.

Handicap betting example
If during a football match, you are allowed to select from different options that will give either of the team a handicap or deficit to overcome by the completion of the match, the type of bet would be considered a handicap bet. The result of the bet and hence your returns would then be determined after the application of that handicap. Let’s take a quick look at the handicap betting options provided by a certain online bookmaker for a Liverpool and Aston Villa match.

Handicap Betting (-1)
Liverpool -1 [5/4]     Handicap Draw -1 [10/4]     Aston Villa +1 [6/4]

Handicap Betting (-2)
Liverpool -2 [100/40]     Handicap Draw -2 [100/40]     Aston Villa +2 [9/15]

When you select any of the above handicap betting options, you’re essentially picking a particular team to win by a certain number of goals after the specified handicap (-1, -2, +1 and +2) has been applied.

Let’s assume that Liverpool beats Aston Villa with the score line of 4 – 2.

Now, you’d win if you had bet on Liverpool -1. How? The ‘-1’ handicap would be applied to the Liverpool score and the final score line would become 4(-1) – 2 = 3 – 2.

You would also win if you had placed a wager on Handicap Draw -2. How? The final score line would be 2 - 2 after subtracting 2 goals from the winning team’s goals.

On the other hand, Liverpool -2 and Handicap Draw -1 selectors would lose their bets in this 4-2 score line scenario. None of the Aston Villa selections would be successful either because Aston Villa loses the game even after the application of the handicaps.

Although handicap football betting can be difficult to understand at first, you can easily place your handicap bets and make money off them once you’ve practiced the system for some time.