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Handicap betting on football

For players new to football betting, the term handicap betting may sound outrageous. However, it is simply one way by which players can place bets in football games with bookmakers and would be explained briefly.

What is handicap betting in football?

In a football game and in many other sports, there’s always one team that’s better than the other one. In football handicap betting, this would be something like a David and Goliath; think Arsenal FC v Aldershot Town. In this game, there’s really no contest whatsoever as Arsenal will be favourites to win the game. However, upsets do happen in football and what the bookmaker will do to ensure that this game is interesting could be by opting for a handicap bet despite Arsenal being favourites to win this game overwhelmingly.

Handicap betting simply means that one team is given a head start or an advantage over the other team which means the disadvantaged team is the ‘handicapped’ team. How handicap betting in football works will be explained using the example of a game between these two teams.
For example, using the fixture above, the odds could be Arsenal (-2.0) 10/11 v Aldershot Town (+2.0) 5/6. This simply means that Aldershot Town has been a given a 2 goal ‘head start’ or advantage by the bookmaker and is represented by +2.0 for Aldershot Town and -2.0 for Arsenal and the fractions are the odds of this event occurring.

For players, placing a bet on this happening is what will determine if the bet will win or lose based on the odds the bookmaker has indicated in this fixture. If the player places a bet on Aldershot Town in the scenario above and then Arsenal FC win the game by three goals or more, then the punter wins the bet and if Arsenal FC win by one goal, then the punter loses the bet.