Football betting terms all punters should know

Stuck on what a football bet actually means? Check out Paddy’s full football betting glossary below

Football betting terms


There’s loads of jargon in football betting – so much so that even experienced punters who bet on football weekly don’t know everything that’s being said. Whether it’s reading previews, looking at the sportsbook or listening to pundits, there’s no shame in not knowing the meaning of every word in the language of football betting.

So this is where Paddy can help. We’ve created the ultimate football betting glossary so you’ll know exactly what’s going on when you next place a bet. From understanding Asian handicaps and enhanced odds, to knowing how free bets on football work, we’ve got you covered here:

Football betting terms

Accas – Short for accumulators, these are combination bets aimed at boosting your odds. Click on more than one selection and your bets will be added together into a super bet. Each leg of your ‘acca’ needs to win in order to win the overall wager. Read more about accumulator betting here!

Asian Handicap – In Asian Handicap betting, the match odds between two teams are evened out by giving the underdog a points advantage, and the option of a draw is scrapped. When the odds are evenly matched, this is known as 0 Asian Handicap. Bettors get a refund if the match is a draw. Here’s all you need to know about handicap betting.

Assist – An assist goes to the player who last touched the ball before the goalscorer scored. Assist betting is perfect when you want to wager on creative players who are unlikely to score themselves, and set-piece takers. Read more about football assist betting here.

American Odds – This odds type is used in the US to display how much money you win from a $100 bet (of course, they have to supersize everything). For example, the Yankees are +200 to beat the Orioles, who are priced at -150. A $100 bet on the Yankees would get you $200 profit. Likewise, you need to wager $150 on the Oriole to earn $100 profit, as their odds are negative.

Anytime Goalscorer – One of the best football bets going, the anytime goalscorer market is ideal for those backing players to find the net, but not necessarily first. The odds are smaller than the first or last goalscorer markets, but the chance of you winning is greatly enhanced.

Bet Builder – Paddy Power has a Bet Builder where players can create their own wagers across multiple selections. The idea of the Bet Builder is that you eradicate bets as you build. For example, once you bet on England to score first in a game against Germany, you can’t also add a Germany clean sheet to your bet.

BTTS – BTTS stands for Both Teams To Score, and is one of those bets that has grown in popularity over the past decade. Bettors will find football fixtures, particularly in the lower leagues, where there are some powerhouse strikes and weak defences, and back BTTS often across various games in an accumulator. Read our both teams to score betting guide today.

Cards – Bet on red and yellow cards during a match. This can focus on individual players picking up a certain card, or a total number of cards shown for one team, or for both teams. You can also bet on card points, with a yellow card equalling 10 points, and a red card 25. Bet over or under a set number of points.

Cash Out – To cash out in football betting is to close your bet before the game or time period is over. It means you guarantee a win even though your payout is smaller, or you can cut your losses on a bet that is destined to fail. Cash out is one of the best things about live football betting.

Corners – Bet on corners in football, such as the total number of corners one team or both teams will earn in a game. Here’s a guide to betting on corners.

Correct Score – Correct score betting is a simple wager where you predict the final score. The most common score in professional football is 1-1, which happens roughly 11% of the time.

Decimal Odds – This odds type uses decimal numbers to show you how much you win if you bet £1. For example, odds of 3.00 would equate to £3 profit (+ your £1 stake back).

Double Chance – Double Chance in football is when you bet on two of the three possible results: Home Win/Draw, Draw/Away Win, Home Win/Away Win. Doing this reduces your odds but boosts your chances of winning, because you’re backing two outcomes instead of just one. Check out Paddy’s double chance betting guide.

Draw No Bet – Draw No Bet is a wager on the match result, whereby you get your stake back if it’s a draw. This is ideal for cup games where neither team wants extra time or a replay.

Each Way – Each Way bets in football don’t really exist, as they’re primarily for horse racing bettors. However, you can consider Each Way in football to be a place bet, where you wager on a team to finish in the top four, six or perhaps even 10 in a league.

Enhanced Odds – Enhanced odds are when Paddy increases the price of certain outcomes, so bettors get more profit for the same stake (assuming the outcome wins!). A perfect example of this is enhancing the odds of Wales to score first in a National League game against Spain, from 4/1 to 6/1.

Evens – When odds are Even, it means you get an equal profit to your stake. So, if you bet £10 on a team to win at Evens, you’ll get £20 back. Evens odds look like this: 1/1, 2.00 or +100.

First Goalscorer – A simple bet on the first player to score in a match.

Fractional Odds – Fractional odds display the profit you’ll get from your stake. For example, you bet on Scotland to beat France at odds of 4/1. On the left is your profit (£4) if you stake the figure on the right (£1). Fractional odds can get a little complicated. A price of 15/8 means you get £15 for an £8 stake, which boils down to £1.87 for a £1 wager.

Free Bet – Free bet deals like those at Paddy Power give players the chance to wager without the risk of losing a stake. Your free bet will be credited to your account and you can place it on football, but remember that you will only earn your winnings back, not the stake. Free bets usually come with minimum odds too. Read more about Paddy Power free bets here.

Full-Time Result – A wager on final result is the simplest bet you can make. Bet on the Home Team (1), Draw (X), or Away Team (2). This bet is sometimes shown as a 1X2 bet, or a moneyline bet in America. Full time result bets usually don’t factor in extra time or penalties if it’s a cup game.

Futures – Futures markets let you bet on something way ahead of time, but there is no guarantee those listed in the odds will even feature in the event. For example, you can bet on the futures markets for who will win the World Cup in 12 years time, even though we don’t know who will be competing. You don’t get your stake back if they don’t compete, but the odds are higher in the futures market.

Handicaps – Give the underdogs a score advantage, or knock a couple of goals off a heavy favourite. Handicap betting is great for evening out the odds, allowing you to wager on unbalanced games such as the FA Cup third round. Again, our football handicap betting guide is the place to go for detail into this bet type.

HT/FT – Bet on the half time result and full time result in one bet. Examples include: Home Team/Home Team, Draw/Home Team, Away Team/Draw.

Head to Head Betting – Bet on individual players going head to head on their stats during a game. For example, you could bet on a Brazil player to score more goals than a France player in a clash between the two nations. Or bet on one hitting the woodwork more times than the other. The possibilities here are endless.

Live Odds – Live odds is a term used for betting markets that run during a game. These odds are in constant flux as they react to what’s happening on the field. Read about in-play betting strategies here.

Live Streaming – Live stream football and bet in-play with Paddy Power across a huge range of leagues and tournaments. Live streaming allows you to wager on live odds in real time and make smarter bet choices. You need to have a Paddy Power account to live stream matches.

Odds-On – Odds-on means the odds on a team to win, for example, are so short that your profit is smaller than your stake. So, rather than Argentina being 4/1 to beat Uruguay, they’re 1/4. Here, you need to bet £4 to win £1 profit (+ your £4 stake obviously).

Outright – Outright markets are where you bet on an outcome of a tournament or league, rather than a specific game. Examples of football outright bets include Premier League champions, teams to be relegated, top scorer, and Player of the Season. 

Over/Unders – Over/Unders is a catch-all term for bets that feature numbers or stats, where bettors wager above or below a certain line. For example, you might bet over there being 3.5 goals scored in a game. If four goals are scored, you win your bet. Likewise, you might bet on a player to score under 1.5 goals. If they score just once, you win your wager. Here’s our guide to over/under 2.5 goals betting.

Promotions – Football betting promotions range in scale and size, and they all aim to give bettors a boost. The most common promotions are odds boosts and free bets. Check out Paddy’s football promotions here.

Power Prices – Get Power Prices when you bet with Paddy Power and earn enhanced odds. Paddy picks a number of outcomes every day for odds boosts.

Team To Go Through – In cup competitions many bettors prefer to wager on which team will progress, and avoid the hassle of betting on the full-time result when the game might go to extra time or penalties. There are only two choices in this bet option: Home (1) or Away (2).

Scorecast – A scorecast bet is when you wager on the final score and a player to score. For example, you bet on Spain to beat Portugal 3-0 and their left winger to bag a goal. Scorecasts are a great way of supercharging your odds but both outcomes need to occur for you to win the bet.

Stake – You stake is the money you are willing to risk when making a wager. For example, if you bet £1 on Netherlands winning the World Cup at odds of 8/1, your stake is £1.

Wincast – A wincast bet is when you wager on the match result (1, X or 2) and a player to score. For example, you bet on Northern Ireland to beat Italy and their centre-back to bag a goal. Wincasts usually have shorter odds than scorecasts but are more likely to win. 

#WhatOddsPaddy – Ask Paddy what odds he’ll give for outcomes that aren’t on the market. If you ask for it, we’ll provide it. Read our #WhatOddsPaddy guide for more detail.

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