What Is the Meaning of Over and Under in Football Betting?

When placing a bet on sports, there are a variety of outcomes you can bet on; however, the two most popular bets people make are outright wins and total points scored. There is another outcome in football betting that is just as popular as the previous two, but it is one that most people do not truly understand the logic behind; that is, the over and under results of games. What exactly do these terms mean and how can you effectively use them to make money off sports? Let’s explore.


If you are unfamiliar, overtime is the extra period of time that is added to the end of a game in which the score is still tied at the end of regulation. Overtime is not an official part of the game, but many sportsbooks offer betting on whether or not a game will go into overtime. If the game ends in a tie, there will be a sudden-death overtime; in this scenario, the first team to score wins the bet. For the record, in the event of a sudden-death overtime, the favorite team wins about 70% of the time.

Overtime Points

When placing a bet on a game that has an overtime component, your chosen bookmaker will add up all the points that are scored in the game and then pay you accordingly. For example, if the game goes into overtime and the total points scored are 48, you would earn 48 points for that specific game. In the event of a tie, the team that wins the highest number of points wins the bet. Most people incorrectly think that this is an oddball bet similar to a coin toss; however, in reality, it is a very precise wagering method that is based on statistical knowledge of the sport.


Under is the opposite of over, in that it is the accumulated score that is below what is expected or predicted by the bettors. For example, if you go into a betting shop and make a $100 wager on the game the Anaheim Ducks will win by more than two goals, the bookie will credit your account with $120 because the Ducks beat the San Jose Sharks by three goals. The reason why the bookie credits you with the additional $20 is because the Sharks scored three goals below their projected total. In the sports world, under results occur fairly often when a team is very highly favored, but for some reason, does not score enough points to cover the spread.

Under 2.5 Goals

When placing a wager on the total number of goals scored in a game, your choice of bookmaker will look at the current line and give you the total number of goals indicated by the oddsmakers for that game. For instance, if the total goals in the game are set at 2.5, you would win your wager if the game ends with the total number of goals being closer to 2.5 than 3.0. In the event of a push, i.e. if the total goals are exactly as predicted by the bookmaker, you would lose your wager. However, if you are unsure as to why the under 2.5 goals wager is popular, remember that it is based on a truism in sports: big games tend to end in draws more often than not.

Double Score

It is also possible to make wagers on the total number of points that will be scored in a game. In this scenario, your chosen bookmaker will take the current line and apply an additional point for every goal scored in the game. For example, if the line is 3.0 goals scored by the San Jose Sharks, you would win your wager if the Sharks score three or more goals, and you would lose your wager if they do not score at least three goals. In American football, an additional point is added to the score for every touchdown passed and every two-point conversion scored; this rule applies to most other sports as well.

Over Under

Finally, there is over and under betting, which is simply taking your pick between the two totals above: either the total number of goals scored or the total number of points scored. For example, if you think that the over/under will be a high-scoring game and you want to bet on it, you would bet on the number of goals scored; if you think that the over/under will be a low-scoring game and you want to bet on it, you would bet on the number of points scored. In over/under betting, you are usually asked to choose one side or the other, although some sportsbooks offer both options. When placing an over/under bet, your choice of bookmaker will look at the current line and offer you the total number of points or goals as indicated by the oddsmakers for that game.

At this point, you might be wondering what all these terms mean and if any of them are worth putting money on. To begin with, you should know that while over and under are the two most popular betting options in sports because they are easy for average bettors to follow, there are actually many others that could be used to make profitable wagers. For example, you could make parlay bets with multiple teams, use props on individual players to make educated guesses as to which team will win, or apply statistics to predict the likelihood of certain events occurring in a game.

To make money off sports, you should focus on becoming a well-rounded bettor who knows how to apply the basics of strategy to make accurate predictions. Furthermore, it is important to note that just because a team is listed as the favorite in a game it does not mean that you should automatically bet against them; this is something you should learn through experience rather than just relying on the odds given by a bookmaker. By knowing when to fight hard for your money and when to back off, you can improve your chances of winning considerably.