Betting on the FA Cup guarantees a lot of surprises and memorable bet slips. The tournament is a platform where lower-tier UK football clubs can test their skills with the top dogs.
Knowing where to pursue FA Cup betting opportunities is harder than it sounds. To save you a lot of time, we have compiled a list of the top FA Cup bookmakers. We reveal all you need to know to have a head start before the next match!
Top 7 FA Cup Betting Sites in the UK
FA Cup Format
The FA Cup was first played in 1871/72 when Wanderers beat Royal Engineers 1-0 in the final. It is the world’s oldest domestic club competition and probably the most famous one too. Teams from the top 10 tiers in English football can enter and the most clubs ever to contest the FA Cup was 763 in 2010/11.
The lower level teams (tiers 5-10) firstly play in six qualifying rounds, with 32 qualifiers entering the 1st round proper along with teams from League 1 and League 2. In the 3rd round proper, Championship and Premier League teams enter the competition. The minimum amount of games a team has to play to win the FA Cup is 6 if they enter in the 3rd round (3rd round/4th round/5th round/quarter final/semi-final/final).
In the event of a draw extra time will be played and if the teams are still level, then it goes to a penalty shoot-out. The FA Cup final venue is always Wembley, but it was played in Cardiff between 2001-2006 while Wembley was undergoing redevelopment works. If you are having a bet on the decider, make sure you get the best FA Cup winner odds. You can check out the last 10 FA Cup winners in our table and this will give you an idea of the teams to consider when you have a bet.
Recommended FA Cup Betting Markets
Here is where we recommend the FA Cup betting markets that are most likely to generate a profit. If you look at our risk table below you can see at a glance the risk involved with the markets we mention, as well as whether they are more suited to beginners, casual punters or experts. Keep on reading to learn more…
FA Cup Outright Winner
The FA Cup outright winner market is a popular one at the start of the season. It is a mid-risk level bet and recent results suggest it is best to focus on Premier League teams, though not necessarily the top teams. The likes of Liverpool and Man City will often be at the top of the market but the FA Cup is not their top priority. We go into more detail on this market in our top tips for FA Cup betting section and as ever, make sure you are getting the best FA Cup outright odds when having a flutter on this market.
Outright Top Goalscorer
This market concerns the overall top scorer in the FA Cup and it can be a very tricky one to work out. The market is settled on goals scored in the 1st round proper onwards. As you can see in our FA Cup format section, lower league sides play 2 matches before the Championship and Premier League teams enter. Consequently, the top scorer market produces some surprising results. For example, In 2018/9 the top FA Cup goalscorer was Irish striker Padraig Amond, who scored 5 goals for League 2’s Newport County. This is a very tough FA Cup betting market to make money from and it is best left to punters with an in-depth knowledge of the top 4 tiers of English football.
First goalscorer FA Cup betting is a great introduction for beginners and casual punters. As the name suggests, you back a player to score the first goal. In this market own goals don’t count at either end so if there is an OG and your selection scores the 2nd goal, you still win! You can also bet on the first goalscorer for either team, as well as on anytime and last goalscorer markets too. If the team you support reaches the decider, this is an FA Cup final betting market that is perfect for a casual bet.
Both Teams to Score
This FA Cup betting market is one that gives you a great chance of getting a return and it is very simple to understand. You bet on whether both teams will score at least one goal, or whether one or both teams don’t get on the score sheet. Odds won’t be massive for the both teams to score (BTTS) market but if you want to have a chance of getting a winner at a bigger price, the game winner/BTTS combination is a good option.
The game winner market is when you bet on the match result in 90 minutes (either team to win or the draw). The FA Cup is famous for producing ‘Giant Killings’. This is when a team from one of the lower divisions manages to pull off a shock win against a top-flight or Championship team. Many top teams decide to rest players in the FA Cup, so watch out for the team news before having a bet on this market. If a team is playing a lot of younger players or reserves, backing the underdogs might provide you with a winner at nice odds.
Over/Under 2.5 Goals
This is one of the most popular Over/Under Fa Cup betting markets. It is a very easy market to understand, you are simply betting on whether there will be more (Over) or less (Under) than 2.5 goals scored in the match. So, if you bet on the over you’ll need both teams to score at least 3 goals between them to win. If you bet on the under, the teams must score 2 goals or less. If you are betting on this market consider the playing styles of the teams involved. If two defensively solid sides are playing, go for the under. Alternatively, go for the over if the teams involved are free-scoring.
How to Find the Best FA Cup Odds
The most important thing by a distance when you are placing a bet on any FA Cup betting market is finding the best odds. All of the bookmakers that make our list of the top 7 FA Cup bookies can be relied upon to have good FA Cup odds but some are better on certain markets than others. The FA Cup odds comparison table* below will give you an idea of how the odds can vary between bookmakers.
The table above shows the match betting odds from Betfair, Unibet and bet365 for the FA Cup semi-final between Man Utd and Chelsea. If you fancied Chelsea to win, bet365 had the best odds at 3.10. Unibet were best about the draw at 3.45, while Betfair were biggest about the Man Utd win at 2.40. This perfectly illustrates the importance of keeping your options open and shopping around if you want to get the best FA Cup betting odds.
Live FA Cup Betting
Live FA Cup betting is available with the vast majority of bookmakers. However, if we had to pick our favourite site for betting in-play on the FA Cup it would have to be Betfair. Their desktop and mobile platforms are up there with the best around and you will find an excellent range of live betting markets for every FA Cup match.
You’ll also be able to bet on a huge range of pre-match markets, including all the ones we list in our FA Cup betting markets section. Speed is key when betting in-play on football and placing a live FA Cup bet only takes a couple of clicks with Betfair. Simply put, when it comes to live betting on the FA Cup, Betfair is our number one choice. Our in-depth Betfair review has lots more information on Betfair’s live suite.
Live Streaming on FA Cup Betting Sites
Unlike the Premier League, live streaming of the FA Cup is available with five of the bookies that make our top 7 list. You can stream FA Cup matches with bet365, Betfair, William Hill, Unibet, and Paddy Power. For us, Betfair is the best destination for live FA Cup streaming for a couple of reasons.
Firstly, you don’t need to have a positive account balance or to have had a bet to qualify for live FA Cup streaming with Betfair. It is 100% free once you are a member. As we mentioned in the previous section, they have a huge amount of pre-match and live FA Cup betting markets too. If you want to ensure you don’t miss out on streaming any matches you can check the schedule on the official FA Cup site.
FA Cup Past Winners
|2015/16||Man Utd||Crystal Palace|
|2010/11||Man City||Stoke City|
In recent seasons Arsenal have been one of the most successful teams in the FA Cup. The Gunners have won the trophy on a record 13 occasions, one ahead of Man Utd who have won it 12 times. Chelsea and Spurs are next best with 8 FA Cup wins apiece. Arsenal had great success between 2013/14 and 2016/17, winning the FA Cup three times. You can read more about those FA Cup triumphs on the official Arsenal website.
What the table above shows us from a betting perspective is that the Big 6 Premier League teams have won the FA Cup in all but one of the last 10 seasons. However, teams like Watford, Aston Villa, Hull and Stoke all reached the final during that period which shows that betting each way on more lowly Premier League teams can be profitable. Wigan are the only team from outside the Big 6 to win the FA Cup in the last decade, beating Man City 1-0 in 2012/13 in one of the biggest shocks ever, as is proudly displayed on the official Wigan Athletic site.
FA Cup Betting – Top Tips
This is a must read section if you are looking for top FA Cup tips that will help you to find more winning FA Cup wagers. Obviously, we cannot guarantee that the top tips below will always result in winning bets, but they will most definitely increase your prospects of producing a consistent profit. A top tip related to safety and security that is worth mentioning is to ensure that your chosen FA Cup betting site holds a valid licence issued by the UK Gambling Commission.
- Look For Value in Outsiders: The big clubs like Man Utd, Liverpool, Man City, Chelsea and Arsenal are normally at the top of the FA Cup outright winner market. However, they can be vulnerable in the early rounds when managers tend to rotate. As you can see in our previous FA Cup winners section you can see that plenty of teams from outside the big 6 reached the decider. As always, make sure you get the best FA Cup odds. 2019 saw Watford reach the final and though they lost 6-0 to Man City, they were still a cracking each way bet at the outset.
- Premier League Performance Clues: Another top tip is to keep a close eye on how the Big 6 are performing in the Premier League. The FA Cup 3rd round isn’t played until after the Xmas period so rather than placing a bet on the outright winner before the season starts, wait to see how the teams are performing in the league before you make your selection. If a team is challenging for the title or battling the drop, the FA Cup won’t be their top priority. Head to our page on the Premier League to find out more about betting on the EPL.
- Head To Head Stats: In football, especially in the FA Cup, history has a funny habit of repeating itself. Looking back at previous matches between teams can often give an indication as to the most likely result. Some sides always struggle at certain stadiums or against certain teams and looking at head to head stats reveals those patterns. Sometimes form goes out the window when two teams clash and H2H records can sometimes help you to find winners at nice odds.
- Underdogs Often Prevail: As we already mentioned in our FA Cup markets section, the FA Cup is famous for producing massive upset results. Wigan were double-figure odds to win against Man City in 2012/13 and giant killings are even more frequent in the early rounds. Relegation-threatened teams in the top two divisions prioritise survival above everything else so if they are facing a team from the lower leagues, an upset could be on the cards due to squad rotation. If you can learn to spot potential FA Cup upsets, you’ll be backing winners at big odds in no time.
- Stick To Your Own Selections: When you are betting on the FA Cup you should treat FA Cup tipping sites with caution. There are a huge amount of tipsters out there but it is very difficult to tell which ones are worth following. In our view it is far better to make your own mind up and choose your own FA Cup betting picks. It is very important to get the top price when having a bet, and you can learn how to do that in our guide to getting the best FA Cup odds.
FA Cup betting FAQs
Which betting site has the best FA Cup odds?
Overall, we believe that Betfair have the best FA Cup betting odds. However, as you can see in our FA Cup odds comparison section, if you want to get the best odds for every bet you need to keep your options open. No one bookie is guaranteed to have the best odds so to ensure you are getting the value, compare and contrast to see who has the best price before you place your bet.
Do any FA Cup betting sites have live streaming?
Yes, Betfair is our favourite FA Cup betting site for live streaming because you can access it for free once you sign up. As we explained earlier in our section on FA Cup live betting, live streaming of FA Cup matches is also available at bet365, William Hill, Unibet and Paddy Power.
Where can I find free FA Cup betting tips?
We do not recommend following free FA Cup betting tips from any source as you never know who a tipster might be affiliated to. As we outlined in our top tips for FA Cup betting above, the best approach is to make your own FA Cup picks. You’ll get a lot more satisfaction when you pick out your own winners.
Who is most likely to win the FA Cup?
In recent seasons Man City have been the team to beat, as you can see in our section on previous FA Cup winners. However, you shouldn’t just focus on the big teams when betting on the FA Cup. Watford reached the final in 2018/19 and Wigan won the FA Cup at massive odds in 2012/13 by beating Man City 1-0.