Football Betting Terminology Glossary
First, we’re going to give you a rundown of all the new and confusing terms that you may come across when betting online. This glossary of terms has a
natural overlap with our explanation of betting markets but we will cover types of bets, such as an accumulator or a treble, in the below glossary,
reserving our next section for betting markets alone.
If you’re an experienced online gambler then understanding the fascinating array of markets and terminology that is out there is second nature, but it
can be scary and confusing to those of you just starting out. There was a time when a bet was just a bet, and a bookmaker didn’t offer over 100 markets
in an extremely competitive and saturated market.
We’ll try not to overload you but as well as covering the most basic definitions, we will take time to consider any pro’s or con’s where possible, e.g.
the downside to betting on accumulators for someone wanting to make money. Below is our glossary of the most important betting terms, A through Z.
Accumulator – The term accumulator refers to the action of accumulating bets and odds; an accumulator involves making four or more
selections, all of which need to win for that bet to be successful. The obvious positive of an accumulator is that you can bag yourself substantial
wins, however the downside can be the greatly increased risk. An example of an accumulator is below.
You bet on Newcastle at 1.85, Leeds at 1.70, Arsenal at 1.50 and Hull at 2.60. The combined odds are 1.85 x 1.70 x 1.50 x 2.60 = 12.26. Just a £10 bet
would return £122.60, however, you only win if all four teams are successful.
Arbitrage – A type of betting that is widely frowned upon and not recommended. However, some books such as Pinnacle welcome it.
In a nutshell, it involves betting on opposite outcomes in a two way market at two separate bookmakers. Whilst it’s rare, it’s often possible to guarantee
a profit as bookmakers can offer very different odds, but it takes vast amounts of money to often see a substantial return.
Banker – A banker is a term that describes a bet that simply won’t lose. It is often low odds and low risk. The obvious con of
buying into this term is that it just isn’t possible. Even Barcelona as a 1.05 favourite can and will be beat at home one day.
Betting Exchange – Betfair being the best example in Europe, a betting exchange is where you essentially trade bets and pit your
wits against others. The terms to back and to lay describe whether or not you will back or oppose an outcome. Unlike bookmakers’ odds, exchange odds
can largely be shaped by the public betting habits. The big con of a betting exchange and all the terminology it’s described in, is that it can sound
like a foreign language to beginners. Do your research.
Betting Markets – A market, like Asian handicap for example, is a type of bet available to you. We’re going to cover that and a lot
more in our next section and all will be become clear. One huge advantage of betting online is that you have so many ‘betting markets’ available to
Double – Like an accumulator, a double involves putting two outcomes into one single bet. The odds of the two teams are combined
(by x) and both need to win for you to get a return. Some people, for example, like to take two lower odds, lower risk selection at odds of say 1.40
and 1.50, which would provide odds of 2.10 at arguably lower the risk. Doubles can make up a big part of even the most professional person’s portfolio
and are well worth using.
Dutching – Dutching simply means covering the bases. Take the World Cup for example. You will look to eliminate the sides you believe
stand no chance of lifting the trophy, and leave yourself with several that you think can. The idea is you target odds good to enough to place three
various amounts on those sides that will guarantee you profit of some kind. A pro can be that it’s a wise move along the way if an original selection
isn’t quite working out, but who’s to say and underdog won’t come to the forefront, leaving you with the risk of losing multiple bets.
Evens – If something is ever evens, then the odds will be displayed as 1/1 fractional odds, 2.00 decimal odds or +100 American odds.
If something is evens, you’ll double your money on any successful bet.
Fixed Odds Betting – Fixed Odds Betting involves betting on odds that are pre-determined. You place your bet and you will be told
your potential returns there and then. Those will never change. Your odds and any potential winnings are guaranteed.
In-Play Betting – This is the action of betting on a game that has already begun. All top bookmakers offer an in-play betting platform
these days, most notably Bet365. The big advantage is you will be able to see live and up to date stats, and you can make a more informed decision.
You may at that point also receive better odds. The big negative to in-play betting is that if you lack discipline, it becomes all too easy to bet
on something just because you can watch it, or place a second bet as you chase a loss on a game.
Juice – This is something that we’ve explained in good depth in our previous piece, all about a beginner’s guide to betting online. Juice
is a term to explain the built-in edge bookmakers have on all markets. If you convert odds to probability, then the probabilities added together will
always surpass 100%. Most commonly, they’ll be around 104%. In a perfect example: Even if the bookmakers get beat by 100 people on odds of evens, and
the bookmakers only beat the say 95 of people on the opposite side of the market, and everyone has bet an equal amount, the bookmakers will still profit
due to that built in 4% edge, known as ‘juice’. It can also refer to a bookmaker taking commission on winning bets.
Money Back Bets – Sure, it’s nice to place a £50 bet knowing that if it losses, you’ll be given £50. The big catch there is that that
£50 will be in free bets. A sensible person may be able to use that £50, double it and keep
the winnings (you often don’t get the £50 free bet stake), but there’s an obvious downside. The perceived security of a refund makes it easy to be
more careless in your original bet, and once that money has already gone, the free bet refund
is nothing more than a free bet token that is also all too easy to waste.
Place – This is more common in horse racing, however you
can bet on a football team to ‘place’ in competitions such as a World Cup or the Champions League. Bookmakers will always specify what terms you’re
betting on, often giving you three or four places, meaning a team will need to at least reach the semi-final.
Teaser Bets – Something most commonly employed by American Sports, it can apply to football. If involves the action of taking two outcomes
you believe will win, lessening the risk, and then placing them together to get the same or better odds. For example:
We believe the following two bets will win: Arsenal to beat Chelsea and Over 2.5 goals Man City vs Liverpool.
We then alter those markets, betting on Arsenal to win or draw and Over 1.5 goals in the Man City vs Liverpool game. We’re left with around half the
odds, but we will then combine to two for a better price produced by less risk.
Value Bet – A value bet is an outcome that is more often than not at higher odds, although many people confuse the concept of ‘value’
just being a big price that can win you lots of money, which is a trap you shouldn’t fall into. Something that is ‘value’ is generally considerable
valuable because the bookmakers may have a very different opinion to you, leaving you with the opinion that certain odds are too high and offer value.
Value is in the eye of the beholder. You can find value at 2/5 or 10/1 equally.
Void Bet – If you place a bet that is not settled for any reason, it will be a void bet. This can be because a football match is postponed
or cancelled. You will always receive your full stake back in cash. Alternatively, if you bet on a two-way market such as draw no bet (we’ll explain
that later!) but a draw is possible, then you will receive your money back also.
There are some terms and bet types that we have not covered, but there are endless terms that apply to many or various sports. Here we have given you a
base understanding of what we believe to be the most important to understand or the most common terms that you will come across.
All of the above terms are terms that you will come across as you begin to bet on a wide range of markets, which we have explained in our Football betting markets glossary.