💡 Top Tip! If you see a player flying into tackles early, back them in the ‘next yellow card market’. Find more top tips in our football betting strategy section.
Football betting is colossal in the UK. Due to the overwhelming competition among bookmakers, the UK is the home of the best football betting sites in the world.
Discover how we select the best betting sites for betting on football. Improve your football betting record by following our experts’ simple strategy. The best place to put it to test is at the finest the UK betting market has to offer.
Top 6 Football Betting Sites In the UK
More articles on this topic:
- head back to our list of the top 6 football betting sites
- learn how to find the best football betting odds
- find out which tournaments to bet on
- take our expert’s football betting strategy advice
- jump to our football betting FAQs
Most Popular Football Betting Markets
When you are betting on football don’t just limit yourself to the same one or two markets all the time. The most successful punters tailor their bets to suit different matches and one of the keys to turning a profit is picking the right market.
Most fans of football betting will be familiar with the most popular markets like match-winner and first-goalscorer. However, there is a lot more to punting on football than those two markets. Check out our risk table below to see some of the other options available to football punters…
The match-winner market is also commonly known as the 1X2 market. This market concerns the match result after 90 minutes and for a lot of novice football punters, this is the first football betting market they come across. It can be a pretty low risk option, depending on the match of course. It is important to remember if you are placing a bet on the match-winner market in a knockout cup tie, the match result market is settled on the score after 90 minutes. So if the team you backed scores a winner in extra-time after a 1-1 draw in regulation time, your bet will be returned as a loser.
This is an extremely popular choice with football punters of all levels, but for us it is one best left to casual punters. As you can see in our table first-goalscorer betting is a very risky business and consistently making money from this market is very difficult indeed. If you are going to watch a match with your mates and want to have an ‘interest’ bet then this is the perfect choice. Odds will be decent if you do manage to find a winning first-goalscorer bet but it is a market where stakes should be kept small due to the high risk involved.
Both Teams to Score (BTTS)
Everyone loves to see the goals flying in when watching football (unless they are scored against your favourite team!). The both-teams-to-score market (BTTS) allows you to bet on whether both teams will score (or not) in a match. We think this is one of the easier football betting markets to find winners in but the skinny odds reflect that. Pro football punters often go big on this market as the risk is low but if a beginner is looking for a few confidence boosting winning football bets, it can be a good starting point too. BTTS bets can be combined with match-winner bets if you are looking for better odds.
The correct-score market is a very difficult one to crack. It can be hard enough to pick the most likely winner of a match, let alone the correct-score! It is one of the riskiest football betting markets of all but if you do manage to find a winning correct-score bet, the rewards will be handsome. Due to the high risk the odds are usually very generous in this market but predicting the exact correct score in any match is far from easy. This is not a market where long term profits are likely to be generated and correct-score betting is best left to casual football punters.
This market is available with all the best football betting sites and betting on over-under-goals is a popular choice with many football punters. The bookie sets a total amount of goals they think will be scored in a match. The punter then bets on whether there will be ‘Over’ or ‘Under’ that amount. This is a 2-way market so the bookie’s total will be over/under 3.5 goals or 2.5 goals. This is a market where finding regular winners is more than possible but you need to know your stuff (team playing styles/form etc). It is a perfect market for serious football betting fans who have an in-depth knowledge of the teams involved.
Half Time / Full Time
The half-time-full-time market works in exactly the same way as the match winner market. The main difference is you are betting on the result at half time and the result at full time. To win, you must get both predictions right. This football bet type comes in useful if you are looking for better odds when backing a heavy favourite in the match-winner market. We recommend this market to those who have a fair bit of experience of betting on football and who are familiar with the playing styles of both teams.
What the Best Football Betting Sites Offer
In this section we discuss what the best football bookies have to offer. If you have decided to start betting on football then it is massively important to pick an online football betting site that has the characteristics you are looking for in terms of things like quality of odds, market range and a wide selection of payment methods. Our list of the top football bookies is an excellent starting point as they have most, if not all, of the features that we highlight below.
- Odds: When betting on football it is absolutely vital that your find the best odds possible. The bigger the odds the more that your winning bet will return so failing to get the best price is going to have a direct impact on profits. You can find out more on the importance of this issue in our section on how to find the best football betting odds.
- Payment Methods: There is no point in signing up with an online football betting site if you can’t fund your account. You need to be able to make deposits and withdrawals so make sure your chosen football bookie facilitates your chosen payment method (debit card/credit card/PayPal/Neteller etc). You can find out more about the payment methods on offer from all of our top football bookmakers if you check out our in-depth sportsbook reviews.
- Live Betting: In-play or live-betting on football is now as popular as (if not more) than pre-match betting. This is why it is imperative that the football betting site you choose has a live-betting suite that is fit for purpose. All the bookies listed on this page take in-play football bets and you can check out who we rate as the best in our section on live-betting on football.
- Football Free Bets + Promotions: As we pointed out earlier, finding the best odds is crucial. Another thing you should always check before you bet is whether there are any football related promotions that apply to your wager. For example, if you are placing an acca look for bookies with acca insurance or acca boost offers. If you are placing a first goalscorer bet, are there any bookies offering to double the odds if your selection scores a second? If you find a promotion that can boost your winnings you should always take full advantage.
- Selection Of Markets: Our section on football betting markets describes just some of the many markets that punters can pick from when betting on football. One of the keys to success when betting on football is finding value and sometimes it is a lot easier to do that in the lesser known markets than in the more mainstream ones. The more markets a bookie has the more likely you will find one that offers serious value so make sure your chosen football betting site has an extensive selection.
- Mobile Matters: More and more football punters are now discarding desktop devices completely and are betting exclusively on their mobile phones. If you are someone who likes to bet on mobile you need to make sure that the football betting site you sign up with has a high-quality mobile app for the device you use. If you are searching for a bookie with a top-notch app, we look more closely at the best bookmakers for mobile betting in our football betting app section.
How to find the Best Football Odds
Some experts say that finding the correct market is the most important element of making betting on football profitable. Others insist that discipline is key. For us at Sportsbetting24 however, value should be your top priority when placing football bets. You simply cannot underestimate the importance of finding the best football betting odds for every bet you place. The odds comparison table* below shows how odds can be very different between bookies for exactly the same markets…
If you look at the odds table* above you will see the variation in prices for the match winner in a recent Premier League match between Man Utd and West Ham. You can immediately see that all three bookies agree on the odds for the draw (7.00), however they have different opinions on the two teams involved. Betfair (1.25) were best about Man Utd, while Unibet (13.5) was the best choice for those who fancied West Ham to pull off the upset.
This proves our point about the need to shop around for the best football betting odds. If you had £10 on West Ham with bet365 you would get £110 back if they won (£100 profit). If, instead, you backed them with Unibet at 13.50 then you’d pocket £135 (£125 profit). That is a massive 25% difference in profits, perfectly illustrating why you should never settle for the first price you see when placing a football bet.
Live Football Betting
In our opinion this is the most exciting and dynamic way to bet on football. Live-betting allows you to react to how a match is unfolding and the more games you watch, the better you will become at finding live football betting winners. For example, if there is an early red card or injury to an important player the odds will change drastically in comparison to the pre-match odds. Additionally, football traders are a lot more likely to make a mistake when forming live betting markets in comparison to pre-match markets and if you can spot those errors you could make a killing.
In the opinion of our experts, the best live-football betting site is bet365, closely followed by Betfair and Unibet. With bet365 you can pick from up to 99 different in-play betting markets for the biggest football matches. Betfair allow members to place live same game multis while Unibet have loads of in-play markets and a cool live match tracker that allows you to follow how a match is unfolding when live streaming in unavailable.
Live Streaming Football on Betting Sites
We always prefer to bet with football betting sites that have live football streaming available. Here at Sportsbetting24 we believe that bet365 is the best bookie around when it comes to providing live football streams.
Punters can watch matches from a wide range of European and international leagues and all that is required to qualify is a positive account balance or that you have placed a bet in the previous 24 hours. Unfortunately, bet365 do not have the rights to live stream certain leagues (for example the Premier League) but for football streaming in general bet365 is a very safe bet for UK football fans.
Another two bookies worth mentioning for live football streaming are Unibet and Betfair. The same rules apply as with bet365 as far as qualifying for live streaming is concerned and they are both excellent alternatives for those who wish to watch and bet on football in the one place.
Best Football Betting Apps in the UK
We briefly mentioned earlier how important it is that football bookies put the effort into designing high quality football betting apps. The majority of football punters are now betting on mobile more than ever and it can be very frustrating if the app you are using doesn’t refresh odds regularly or if it takes an age to place a bet.
Luckily for you, we can confirm that all the bookies that make our top football sportsbooks list have mobile apps that are up there with the best in the industry. Most of them have designed native apps for Android and iOS and if you don’t fancy downloading the app you can use their excellently designed mobile-friendly sites via your mobile browser. Just make sure to find the best football betting app suited to your punting habits.
List of the best football betting apps in the UK
Best Football Tournaments to Bet On
Generally speaking most football betting fans stick to the leagues and teams they know best when betting on football. The more you know about the top leagues and cups from around the world, the better your chances will be of finding winning value bets. Avid punters and fans who have an in depth knowledge of English, German, Spanish and European football can place an entire season’s worth of bets before the tournaments even start! Below we briefly outline the best football tournaments to bet on…
- Premier League: England’s top division and widely regarded as the most competitive league in the world. Because it is so competitive it can be difficult to predict results from week to week but as you can see on our exclusive Premier League page, there are lots of different pre-season outright Premier League bet types you can pick from.
- Champions League: The premier continental club competition in the planet and a trophy that every big European club craves. If you are looking for inspiration on which clubs to back for the Champions League then you should find some useful Champions League stats on our dedicated page.
- FA Cup: The FA Cup is widely regarded as the most famous domestic cup competition in the world. Although it’s stock has fallen among the top English clubs, many players from South America and Europe dream of lifting the FA Cup. There are plenty of FA Cup betting markets to choose from, as you can see on our FA Cup betting page.
- Bundesliga: The German top-flight is one of the more predictable European football leagues. There are not many teams capable of competing for the title and more often than not, Bayern Munich come out on top. If you are going to bet on this league watch out for Bundesliga betting promotions like the ones we list on our Bundesliga betting page.
- La Liga: The top division in Spain has plenty of betting opportunities for football punters. Okay, Barca and Real tend to dominate as far as winning the title is concerned but there can often be a surprise package that challenges for a top 4 berth. As you can see on our La Liga page, it is vital to find the best La Liga betting odds if you are having an outright bet.
- Europa League: This competition is second only to the Champions League in terms of importance to European clubs. In the Premier League it is becoming more and more difficult to get a top 4 finish so English teams often target the Europa League as the winner qualifies for the Champions League.
Expert Football Betting Strategy Tips
One of the most commonly asked questions is ‘how do you succeed in football betting?’. This section will hopefully give you the answer(s). We already highlighted some of the key football betting markets to focus on, now we will discuss how to best approach betting on them. Check out our expert betting strategy tips below…
- Stick To Singles: Bookies love punters that place massive accas with multiple selections. The more legs that are included the more chance you’ll lose, no matter how short the odds for each leg are. Our advice is to keep accas to as few legs as possible or preferably, just stick to single bets. Okay, if you land a massive acca you’ll win big but the chances of that happening are small. It is a lot easier to find regular winning single bets that generate a steady profit.
- Don’t Follow Online Tips: In our opinion you should never blindly follow online football betting predictions. For one, you don’t know for sure who the tips are coming from and more importantly, whether the tipster has links to any bookies.
- Knowledge Is Key: Before you bet an any football match or tournament you should always do plenty of research. The type of research you carry out depends on the market you are betting on. For example, if you are planning on placing a first goalscorer bet on a Europa League match, you check who has been hitting the target regularly on the official Europa League statistics page.
- Mix It Up: The final expert football betting strategy we recommend following is don’t just bet on one market all the time. Mix it up! The more familiar you become with different markets the more you’ll be able to spot wrong prices and this is when football punters can clean up. As we mentioned in our live football betting section, in-play markets provide punters with the best chance of finding excellent value bets so don’t just focus on pre-match markets if you want to maximise profits.
Football Betting in the UK
Football is the national sport in the UK and huge crowds descend on stadiums around the country every weekend. It is a huge part of British life and for many, football on a Saturday is all that matters. If their team loses, fans will be miserable for the rest of the week. On the other hand, if they win they will have springs in their steps, especially if they manage to beat a local rival.
As Bill Shankly famously once said ‘some say football is not a matter of life and death…it is much, much more important than that’. For many UK football supporters, those words ring true. That is probably why football betting in the UK is part and parcel of life for many football fans too.
The FA are the main rule makers of English football and the FA Handbook is a very useful resource if you want to know anything about the regulations of the sport. The Premier League operates under those rules but there are some subtle differences. The Premier League official site has some very useful documents regarding the rules and regulations that can be downloaded from the official Premier League publications page.
Top 6 Football Betting Sites Up Close
If you are worried about whether the bookies that make our list are above board and legit, you shouldn’t be. Football punters can rest assured that all of the football betting sites we mention are fully licensed and regulated. You can find out more information and news on licensing requirements and on bookies that have fallen foul of regulations on the official UK Gambling Commission news page.
We can also confirm that every football site that we recommend using on this page has a special feature that makes them a solid choice for betting on football. We outline the single best characteristic that sets them apart in the table below.
|Bookie||Best Football Betting Feature|
|bet365||Top choice for live football betting.|
|Unibet||Over 400 markets for the biggest matches.|
|Betfair||Live football streams available.|
|888Sport||Daily football enhanced prices and odds boosts.|
|BetVictor||Very competitive odds for football.|
|William Hill||Request odds for any football bet on Twitter using #YourOdds|
You already know that we think bet365 is an excellent choice for live betting and, as we outlined earlier, also for live football streaming. That isn’t all that makes them our top destination for betting on football though. They have a great selection of markets (150+) for matches from all of the best football tournaments to bet on that we outlined earlier. Bet365 aren’t afraid to take big bets either, making them a top option for beginners and pro-punters alike.
Like bet365, Unibet are one of the best football betting sites for live streaming. They come up trumps in terms of the range of football markets on offer too, with 400+ pre-match markets for the biggest Premier League matches. You won’t find Unibet wanting when it comes to football free bets and promotions either and that is why we rank them so highly.
Betting on football at Betfair gives you a great chance of getting the best football betting odds on a decent number of markets. We explained the importance of this in our section on what the best football sites offer. You can live stream action from some of the best leagues in the world and if you sign up with Betfair you’ll be able to back and lay football bets on the Betfair Exchange too.
888Sport are becoming one of the go to bookies for UK football punters. Why? Well, one of the main reasons is 888Sport’s regular and generous enhanced odds offers on football. They boost prices daily on selected football trebles and wincasts. If you are a fan of inflated football betting odds, 888sport most definitely won’t let you down.
Unlike the rest of the betting sites that make our list, BetVictor made their name on the UK high street. As we mentioned in our section on football betting in the UK, the sport is embedded in British culture and BetVictor has long been a favourite with UK football punters. Best of all, BetVictor’s traders aren’t afraid to have an opinion. Consequently, you’ll find some seriously good odds when betting on football.
The William Hill experience is overall an incredibly positive one. Like BetVictor, William Hill forged their reputation on the high street but they have embraced the challenge of becoming a leading online football betting site. The fact that you can request a price for any football market you can think of on Twitter by using the #YourOdds hashtag shows that William Hill are at the cutting edge of betting on football online.
Football Betting FAQs
What’s the best football betting site?
The best football betting site in our view is bet365. They easily took top spot in our list of the top 6 football bookies thanks to their superb live betting suite. The availability of live football streaming at bet365 is another huge plus.
How do you bet on football?
Betting on football is as easy as choosing one of the bookies on our list, registering and making a deposit. Before you place your bet make sure to take our top football betting strategies on board. That way you might make your first bet a winning one!
What are the most common football bets?
The most common football bets are placed on the match winner (1X2) market. Other popular choices with football betting fans include first goalscorer, over/under goals and correct score. You can find out more about all of those, and more, in our section on football betting markets.
How do football betting odds work?
Football betting odds simply determine the return if your bet wins. Odds of 2/1 will generate a return of £30 if you place a £10 winning bet (£20 profit/£10 stake). The size of the odds depends on the probability of the outcome in the opinion of the bookie and their opinions vary. This means that you need to shop around for the best prices, as we outline in our section on how to find the best football betting odds.