Handicap betting happens when there is a noticeable difference in the quality of two teams in a game. This difference could be because of a host of reasons; home field advantage, player injury, dominance over the years, etc. This is why handicap betting or “point betting” came about. This is meant for leveling the play field between two unevenly-matched teams.
How Handicap Betting works:
In handicap betting, the bookie extends a virtual advantage for the weaker opponent. When you place bets on the apparently weaker team to become winners, they get an edge over the other (stronger team). So, chances are even. Else, without a handicap, the stronger side was bound to win and that would make the outcome predictable and less thrilling. In soccer too, handicap betting takes into account such factors and creates odds accordingly to give you a chance to win.
When perceived differences are very significant, the betting odds for the favorite will be small. This means you can get only minimal returns. For bettors therefore, there is not much incentive. The “handicap” is nothing but a number which the bookmaker sets to counter the difference between opposing teams. The idea behind the handicap is to offer more appealing and balanced odds.
As far as handicap soccer betting is concerned, the odds even out the playing field. It considers the differences in the perceived strengths of the two participating teams. It then fixes a handicap, negative and positive, to each side. The handicap is then applied the game’s outcome to grade bets. Here are the 3 types of handicap betting you need to know about:
- Level Handicap: This is a situation where there is no marked difference in the strength of both teams. So, no handicap gets assigned and both start with 0 goal. For you to win a bet, you must identify one of the teams which you feel will score better than the other. When the match ends in draw, all bets get refunded. A zero handicap does not give advantage to either team.
- Single Handicap: This happens where there is a marked difference in the strengths between the two participating teams. The supposedly superior team is provided with an appropriate handicap. This is done to level the field for betting. So, if you bet on a team having handicap -1 goal, that team has to win by greater than 1 goal to cover this handicap so that you win your bet. But, if they manage to win only by 1 goal, the outcome with applied handicap is a draw as far as betting is concerned. So, if the other team draws or wins, you lose the bet.
- Split Handicap: This happens when the differences in ability between the two teams is minimal. You can then split the stake across 2 handicaps. For example, Team A can be given -0.5 and 0.5 handicaps. If you bet on this team and it loses, you stand to lose both the bets. When the game ends in draw, half the stake gets refunded. When your team wins, both handicaps are covered and you win both bets.
Knowing how handicap betting works can offer you an alternative to making money in soccer betting.