Last updated: 02/04/2024

How To Bet On Football Online: A Beginner’s Guide

How To Bet On Football Online: A Beginner’s Guide

When it comes to the UK’s favourite sports, football is at the top of the list. However, no matter who you support or which league you follow, you must know the basics of betting before you make your first wager.

So, if you’re new to betting or want to quickly learn how to bet on football online, keep reading. In this guide, you’ll find crucial information and a few tips to help you boost your bets. Let’s dive right into it!

Understanding The Football Betting Basics

Are you interested in learning how to bet on football? You’re in the right place. Here are the basic concepts you should know before making a sportsbook account. 

Odds & Probabilities

Understanding odds is critical to any type of betting, so don’t spend any cash until you’re familiar with football odds. 

Typically, bookies use fractional odds to show football odds. These odds are most common in the UK and are shown with a slash (/) symbol. The first number shows potential profit for these odds, and the second is the stake.

For example, 4/1 odds mean you’ll receive £4 for every £1 wager – if the bet is successful. If the bet isn’t successful, you’ll lose your stake. 

There are other types of odds (decimal and moneyline odds), but these aren’t usually used for UK sports or football odds.

Competitions & Betting Markets

Once you’re familiar with football odds, it’s time to choose a match or competition to bet on. The more popular an event, the more valuable information you’ll find for it. 

Popular football events include:

In addition to choosing a football competition or match, you should explore different betting markets. These are different categories of bets available for specific events. Examples include the outright winner, goal minutes, and player-specific bets. 

Niche betting markets have higher potential payouts but are harder to predict. Make sure you do your research before putting your cash down!

Quick Guide: How To Bet On Football

You’ve learned about the odds, explored betting markets and matches, so it’s time to learn how to place a football bet. Luckily, betting is quick and easy thanks to online sportsbooks. 

Here are some general steps you can use for most sportsbooks and betting sites not under GamStop:

  • Find a reputable bookmaker – The first step is to find a legitimate sports betting site. Each sportsbook is different, so take five minutes to examine the website before you get started.
  • Create an account – When you’ve found a bookie that meets your needs, start the sign-up process. Make sure you accept the T&Cs and enter your real details.
  • Deposit your funds – Once signed up, you must make your first deposit. Depending on your chosen payment method, there might be a minimum deposit to meet.
  • Add promotions – Some sportsbooks offer welcome bonuses, free bets, or bonus funds. Check the “Promotions” to make sure you don’t miss out on any offers.
  • Find the football section – Navigate to the football sports betting section to find your desired event. All good sports books should offer a range of matches, leagues, and markets.
  • Place your bet – When you’ve found your desired outcome, enter your wager amount and confirm the bet. Don’t forget to watch the match and monitor the odds!

Choosing The Right Online Sportsbook

Now you know how to bet on football online. But that’s not the only basic betting concept to learn! You also need to know how to choose a reputable sportsbook with great football betting options and player safety features. 

Here are the top factors our experts look for when finding legitimate bookies:

Lots Of Football Betting Options

What’s the point in joining a sportsbook if the betting options are sparse? When selecting a sportsbook, make sure you look at the betting options on the website. Some have limited options or don’t feature popular events. It’s best to know what’s on offer before you go through the trouble of signing up!

Legitimate Payment Methods

Payment methods are another important factor to consider, especially when different websites offer different options. 

Most sportsbooks accept:

  • Debit cards
  • Bank transfers
  • Digital wallets

If you want to pay with cryptocurrency or credit cards, an independent bookmaker might be best for you. These bookies aren’t restricted by UKGC rules. 

You should also check whether your payment method is available for both deposits and withdrawals. Sometimes, bookies don’t allow deposits and withdrawals via the same method. So, always check before you sign up.

Reliable Customer Support

While customer support isn’t the most exciting concept, it’s also vital to consider. After all, if anything goes wrong, you’ll want a reliable team on-hand to help.

Look for sports betting websites with 24/7 support and availability through different channels (e.g. live chat, email, and telephone).

Licensing Information

If you’re learning how to place a football bet online, you should also brush up on licensing knowledge. Licensed sportsbooks provide a safer experience, and you’ll have a regulatory body at your service if you need any assistance. 

Popular football bookies usually have UKGC, Curacao, and MGA licences. Betting websites usually display their licence information on the bottom (footer) of the website.

High-Value Bonuses & Promotions

Bonuses and promotions take your betting experience to the next level. So, don’t sign up to a betting site before checking out the “Promotions” section.

The best websites provide welcome bonuses, free bets, bonus funds, and returning player rewards to thank their punters. Some even offer event-specific promotions, so don’t forget to look before any big matches.

Mobile Optimisation

Once you know how to bet on football games, you won’t want to miss a second of the action. With mobile-optimised websites, you don’t have to! Thanks to mobile-friendly websites, these modern sportsbooks allow you to bet via your smartphone or tablet. A few also offer downloadable apps to make your on-the-go betting experience as seamless as possible.

Guide To Depositing And Withdrawing Funds

As we briefly touched on in the section above, making deposits and withdrawals may change depending on where you’re betting. Before you understand how to place a bet on football, take a read through the depositing and withdrawal basics to understand the general payment process.

Depositing Funds

Depositing funds is one of the first steps you’ll take when you make a sportsbook account. You can do this via the “Cashier” or “Deposit” section, and the process is usually very straightforward. 

However, you must ensure that your desired payment method is available for deposits before diving in. Otherwise, you’ll have created an account and won’t be able to begin betting. Not ideal if you want to bet ASAP!

Sometimes, there are minimum deposit amounts you need to reach to fund your account. If you don’t want to spend lots of money in one go, look for “low minimum deposit” sportsbooks. 

Withdrawing Funds

Alongside understanding your chosen website’s deposit options, you should examine whether their withdrawal options work for you.

Often, the deposit and withdrawal methods don’t 100% match up. For example, PayPal might be a deposit option, but you can’t withdraw your winnings via this method. 

You should also check whether there are minimum withdrawal limits. Some sportsbooks only allow you to cash out once your winnings hit a minimum number (e.g. 50 EUR), which might not work for your bankroll. 

Your potential withdrawals may also be limited by wagering requirements or KYC checks. So, always read through withdrawal terms and conditions before you start playing.

Finding The Right Payment Methods

Another payment factor you’ll need to understand before knowing how to put a bet on football is which payment methods work for you. Reflect on which payment methods you prefer, and then only consider sites with these options.

UKGC-licensed casinos allow PayPal, Apple Pay, bank transfers, debit cards, and many digital wallets. However, you can’t use crypto or credit cards at these casinos. If you want to use these two payment methods, non-UK crypto and credit card betting sites might work better for your finances.

Popular Types Of Football Bets To Place

If you’re curious about where to bet on football online, you may also want to learn about the most common football bets. From betting on potential goal scorers to overall results, here are the most popular wages you’ll see on footy sportsbooks.

1. Match Odds 

Match odds are one of the top types of football bets. These allow you to wager on who will win the game or if it will be a draw. Perfect if you’re interested in predicting the overall final result.

2. Handicaps

Handicaps are another in-demand wager, as this type of bet allows you to bet on various options and level out the odds. These are popular when there is a clear favourite team, and the handicap is usually shown as a goal advantage or deficit. Handicaps are best if you want a more nuanced betting option rather than a win or lose bet.

3. Over/Unders

If you enjoy betting on the smaller details, over/unders might be for you. This type of football bet allows you to wager on corners, goals, shots, cards, and more. Your result must land over or under your prediction to win. 

For example, if you bet on a +1.5 total goals scored and two or more goals occur, you’ll win the over/under bet.

4. HT/FT

HT/FT stands for half-time and full-time. With this type of bet, you bet on who will win at HT and then FT. This gives you more flexibility than a match odds bet, which is perfect if you’re interested in game strategy.

5. Scorecast

Are you great at predicting goals? A scorecast might be the best bet for you. This type of bet requires you to bet on the first and last player to score and the total goals in the same match.

6. Player Bets

Finally, there are plenty of player-specific bets for those keen to show their football knowledge. Top options include anytime goalscorer, player sent off, player shown a card, first/last goalscorer, player to have a shot, to score or assist, anytime assist, and more.

7 Tips For Successful Football Betting

A major part of learning how to bet on football games online is knowing how to create a successful bet. Our industry experts have pooled together their top tips for budding football bettors below. 

1. Research The Game

The first tip might seem simple, but it’s one that most punters forget. You should spend some time researching and analysing the game before you make your first wager. For keen football fans, this won’t take too long. But if you’re new to the sport, you should thoroughly understand before risking your cash.

Topics to research include:

  • Team dynamics
  • Player strengths
  • Match statistics
  • Football history
  • Game rules

A solid understanding of the game enhances your ability to predict football outcomes, making your betting decisions more informed and more likely to succeed.

2. Diversify Your Bets

Another way to boost the success rate of your bets is to vary the type of bets you make. You should also explore different betting markets, as splitting up your bankroll reduces the chance of big losses and provides more chances of a successful result.

So, go ahead and wager on the overall score and over/unders!

3. Maintain Discipline

While staying disciplined doesn’t sound exciting, it’s the best way to achieve an exciting result. Following your emotions and making impulsive bets can lead you to losses or inconsistent bets. Instead, follow your research and avoid betting without a clear mind. 

Some punters also refrain from betting while under the influence. If you’re new to sports betting, only playing while sober might be a good idea while you get used to the system.

4. Use Bonuses & Promotions

Learning how to bet on football online is thrilling, but don’t get so wrapped up in the experience that you forget to apply for promotions and bonuses!

Alongside a streamlined user experience, most modern sportsbooks also offer generous bonuses and promotions to make your first bets go further. These usually include welcome bonus offers and free bets, and sometimes you might find match-specific promotions if it’s an especially important game.

You can usually add these to your account via the sportsbook’s “Promotions” page. However, some may require bonus codes.

5. Look At The Big Picture

Another betting tip many punters forget is to look at the big picture. Rather than only focusing on the nitty-gritty details, look at how your team has performed in the past few games. Taking these into account can give you some important insight into their general performance. 

Similarly, you should also look at the big picture of your betting results. It’s easy to stress out about a few losses. But when you look at your bets over the past month, you can gain some clearer insight into the success of your strategy and research. 

6. Read The Latest News

Alongside your general football research, keep up-to-date with the latest news updates. There are plenty of last-minute changes in football, especially during big competitions. Following a few trusted outlets will ensure you have verified information to help you navigate the odds.

Popular ways to keep track of football news include:

  • Via professional outlets (e.g. BBC Sport & ESPN)
  • Social media pages
  • Newsletters
  • Sporting magazines
  • Blogs & journalists

7. Don’t Follow The Favourites

It’s true, favourites have lots of buzz for a reason. However, don’t blindly bet on the most popular teams because everyone else does. Read the odds and look at the details to predict whether the teams will perform well.

Like all sports, football can be unpredictable and nothing is certain. You’ll always improve your odds by doing the research for yourself rather than following the crowd without questions. 

Managing Your Bankroll Effectively

If you’re searching “How can I bet on football games online,” make sure you educate yourself about bankroll management as well as the betting basics.

Your bankroll is the amount of money you set aside to fund your wagers. This should be a sum of cash you can afford to lose, like any money you’d spend on entertainment. Having clear bankroll boundaries ensures you’re responsibly betting and prevents you from having financial problems. 

The best ways to manage your bankroll for success include:

  • Establishing a clear budget
  • Dividing your bets into units (1-3% of your total budget)
  • Only betting during set times or on specific days
  • Regularly monitoring your bankroll
  • Adjusting your bankroll depending on performance

Staying Safe and Secure While Betting Online

Now you know how and where to bet on football online, you’ll need to make sure you stay safe while having fun. Here are some strategies to remember for a safe and secure football betting experience:

  • Only use secure payment methods – Keeping your finances protected is critical. So, make sure you only make deposits and withdrawals through legitimate payment methods and brands you trust. You should also avoid sharing private payment information on unsecured websites or with unknown payment companies. 
  • Look for website encryption – As mentioned above, you want to protect your information from cyber threats. So, look for SSL encryption and robust website safety features to guarantee protection. 
  • Choose reputable sportsbooks – Some sports betting websites have better reputations than others. Opt for websites with positive reviews, genuine licences, and lots of experience in the industry for a safe experience.
  • Allow two-factor authentication – Use two-factor authentication (2FA) wherever possible, as this adds an extra level of security to your betting account. 
  • Choose a strong password – Like creating any online account, you should use a unique password to protect your football betting account. Mix up symbols, letters, and numbers for the best result. 

Finally, you should also take time to monitor your accounts. Look for unusual activity, unauthorised transactions, or bets you don’t recognise. If you see something suspicious, report it to player support as soon as possible.

Enjoying the Thrill of Football Betting Responsibly

Last but not least, all new football bettors should take a moment to understand responsible gambling. Adopting responsible gambling practices promotes a safe and sustainable relationship with betting, protecting you from negative financial and mental impacts and problem behaviours. 

Here are some strategies to be aware of before you begin football betting:

Don’t Chase Losses

Chasing losses means increasing your bets or making more wagers to cover money lost in previous bets. Though spending more to win your cash back may seem like a good idea, this can lead to larger losses and financial consequences. 

Instead, focus on your long-term strategy and accept that unpredictable losses are normal in sports betting. If your strategy isn’t working out, adjust the overall direction and don’t make lots of impulsive bets. 

Avoid Betting When Emotional 

You should avoid making significant bets if you’re feeling stressed, upset, or even excited. Heightened emotions can cloud your judgement and make it difficult to make strategic bets. Overlooking strategy and research will lessen the success of your bets, leaving you with potential losses and financial risks. 

Try to only bet while in a clear and calm mindset. This will help you make better-informed decisions and stick to a disciplined strategy.

Take A Break When Needed

Finally, if betting becomes compulsive or loses the fun, ensure you know how to self-exclude or take a step back. 

Most sportsbooks allow you to self-exclude via their customer support team. However, you can take time off from UKGC betting websites by self-excluding with the GamStop programme.

If you’d rather have a confidential chat than self-exclude, there are plenty of professional gambling charities ready to listen. These teams provide anonymous advice to help you navigate difficulties.

How To Bet On Football And Win – The Takeaway

If you’ve Googled “How to bet online football,” we hope this blog has given you the answers you’ve been looking for. From reading the odds to finding secure websites, this guide is here to help you get started. Bookmark the page today so you don’t lose it! 

Want to learn more about the world of online betting? Read more articles by industry experts on the Non-GamStop Betting blog.

Meet Our Team Of Gambling Specialists

Hello! I’m David Goldblatt, the lead author at I’m an experienced sports journalist who transitioned into making online gambling content in the mid-2010s. It’s something that fascinates me and I’ve always loved the way sports betting can make any event more exciting!

When I’m not researching the latest non-GamStop bookies, I’ll be playing football in the park or watching the local cricket club with my mates. I’m a massive advocate for responsible gambling, so feel free to message me if you need help. Other than that, I hope you enjoy my stuff and can find some trustworthy betting sites to join!