In many football (aka soccer) betting markets, the terms ‘favorite’ and ‘underdog’ are used interchangeably. This can leave you with some confusion over what exactly these phrases mean. Here’s an info-packed primer to clear up all the ambiguity and give you a better understanding of how these betting markets work.
What Is A Soccer Betting Market?
To begin with, let’s talk about the concept of a betting market. A ‘betting market’ is where you can place wagers (aka bets) on the outcome of an event, such as a game. Typically, there’s pretty high liquidity in these markets, so it’s easy for anyone to place a bet. Also, since football is a popular sport with a broad appeal, there tends to be a lot of wagering interest. This makes betting markets a popular place for people to hang out, especially since there’s usually plenty of action happening at any given time.
What Is The Difference Between A Soccer ‘Favorites’ Bet And An ‘Underdog’ Bet?
When it comes to predicting the outcome of a game, most people will instinctively look to identify the team they think is going to win. However, this can be a tricky business, especially in the world of sports betting. For instance, in most sports books, Manchester United is a 1-to-2 shot at winning next year’s UEFA Champions League, while Chelsea is the 2-to-1 favorite to win the competition.
If you’re unsure of the exact difference between these two teams or if they’re even remotely familiar to you, then you might want to avoid betting on either team in this case. Instead, pick a side you believe is undervalued and has an excellent chance of winning.
More often than not, sportsbooks and betting sites make the distinction between these two types of bets (and many others) clear:
- Favorites: These are the teams you’ll usually find marked with an ‘F’ or the name of a well-known person (like Maradona or Pele) on the internet. Typically, favorites are the sides that you think are going to win with ease and don’t pose much of a challenge for other teams. They’re also the sides that other sports books and betting sites prefer because there’s usually not much liquidity on underdogs. For this reason, the opposite is often true—the favorites are the unfavored teams in most cases. Unless you’re playing against the spread (more on this below), you’ll rarely find a great deal of betting interest on the underdogs.
- Underdog: These are the teams you’ll usually find marked with a ‘~’ or an ‘U’ or the name of a less famous person (like Jordan or Zidane) on the internet. Typically, there’s a lot of betting interest on underdogs because it’s usually difficult to predict their outcome. You may have heard of the term ‘underdog’ in other sports, such as boxing or horse racing, and it usually means the same thing here: a team that you think is going to lose but will probably surprise you with an excellent performance.
How Do You Calculate The Spread?
In the world of sports, you’ll often hear people speak of ‘the spread’. This refers to the amount of money, or the spread amount, that you’ll need to wager in order to get a particular side to win. Most often, the spread is calculated by adding together the point spreads for all the games scheduled for a given day. So, if you’re playing at a sports book that publishes point spreads, you’ll need to do some research and find out what the spread is for each game. Some books may only publish the spread for certain events, like the Super Bowl or the Stanley Cup finals, so you’ll have to do some more research to find this out.
How Do You Decide Whose Point Spread You’ll Use For Each Game?
This is where things can start getting confusing. Even if you know the point spread for each game, you have to decide which one to use for a particular side. It could be tricky to locate the point spread for a specific game, especially if it’s been a while since the game was played. For this reason, many people turn to internet resources when they’re playing on a mobile device and need to look up information about a specific game. The internet has made it much easier for everyone to keep track of all the scores and stats for games played over the years. This has also made it convenient for people to keep track of all the relevant information for their favorite sports teams. The point is that you can find everything you need to know about a team or game in a matter of seconds.
The Spread For Manchester United Vs Chelsea Is
If you want to know the spread for one of the most popular betting markets involving two of the biggest names in world sport, then you’ve come to the right place. Let’s take a look at the current point spread for Manchester United vs. Chelsea, as of January 14th, 2020:
Manchester United is a 5.5-point favorite, while Chelsea is a 2-point underdog. This means that if you wager $100 on Manchester United, then you’ll win $550. If you lay the same bet on Chelsea, then you’ll win only $200. So, the spread is $350 for Manchester United vs. Chelsea. This difference in the spread is why you might want to avoid betting on either team in this case. It’s not that either side is necessarily a bad choice; it’s just that they’re not the best options available in the betting market. If you’re looking to place a wager on this game, then you’ll need to search for the best odds available for Liverpool or another side you favor.
What About The Over/Under (O/U)?
Many people confuse this with the spread, but it’s a bit more complicated. The over/under (O/U) is used to predict the total number of goals a side will score in a game. For example, if you wager on Manchester United to score more than two goals, then you’ll win $100 if they score exactly two goals, but you’ll lose $100 if they score more than two goals. When used in this way, the over/under is typically combined with a side bet to improve the entertainment value and appeal to those looking for an exciting challenge. Many sportsbooks offer the over/under as an alternative to the regular point spread and offer more attractive odds. This is why it’s commonly used in conjunction with other bets, such as sports or tequila shots (tickets also usually come with these types of wagers).
Which Teams Are Popular Withbettors?
Like with any sport, getting to know the betting public is important. It can help you find out which teams and players are more or less attractive to the general public. Several websites, like OddsShark, keep track of the most popular teams and players in the world of sports betting. This can help you get a better idea of which teams are most in demand and which ones you should avoid if you want to make the most of your betting experience. Here are the top 10 most popular teams in sports betting, as of February 19th, 2020:
1. Manchester United (12-4-1)
2. Liverpool (9-5-2)
3. Arsenal (8-5-3)
4. Tottenham (8-5-3)
5. Chelsea (8-4-3)
6. West Ham United (7-6-2)
7. Leicester (7-6-2)
8. Watford (7-5-2)
9. Bournemouth (7-5-2)
10. Newcastle United (6-6-2)
Man United has been the most popular team in sports betting for several years now, and it’s not hard to see why. They are a popular pick for the simple reason that they are a very consistent side and rarely disappoint their fans. Their consistent win-performace and relatively small point spreads usually result in relatively high liquidity and turnover, making it a popular choice amongst sportsbooks and gamblers alike.