Betting Markets Explained

Lee Jackson by Lee Jackson | Published: April 21, 2019

A betting market can be thought of as a category for a specific type of bet. For example, if you are looking at a Premier League football match, you are going to be able to find a wide selection of markets which are available for just that one fixture.

Those will range from the straight forward Match Outright Winner market, through to markets such as Correct Score and Asian Handicap. So for any given event in any sport, be it tennis, cricket, basketball, volleyball or anything else, bookmakers may open numerous different betting markets for punters to look into.

Across the many sports that are out there which bookmakers operate odds for, there are simply too many markets to list in just one resource. In this betting guide you can find some of the most popular markets that are available for bettors to consider.

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Popular Betting Markets Explained

Double Chance

The Double Chance market on a football game offers bettors the chance to pool together two of the three potential match outcomes into one bet. In a match between Manchester United and Liverpool for example, the options would be Man Utd Win – Draw, Liverpool Win – Draw, or Man Utd Win – Liverpool Win. One single stake covers a Double Chance bet, but odds are less favourable than in backing just one single match outcome. So if you backed a Liverpool Win – Draw then your bet would be successful if either of those outcomes occurred.

Correct Score

This is a popular market for events such as football matches as well as in other sports like tennis. The market will list options of what the final score of a match will be exactly. The market prices within a correct score market for a football match are generally ranging from around 6/1 and larger. That is because of the difficulty in actually picking one exact score out of a multitude of possible outcomes. It’s a high-risk market, but one with high reward. In selecting a 2-1 correct score, for example, only that exact result will result in a win.

Half Time/Full Time

The Half Time/Full Time markets which are available in football matches asks the punter to correctly predict the outcome of the match at two points of the fixture. In order for a bet in this market to win, both parts of the bet have to be correctly called, namely what the half time result is going to be and what the full-time result is. If just one of the predictions are correct, the entire bet is lost. If Draw/Liverpool half time/full time option is selected in a match but Liverpool were winning at half time and winning at full time, the bet loses.

Both Teams To Score

The popular BTTS market in football betting simply asks whether or not both teams will score in a match. It’s a straight-up option of a yes or no and because of that, market prices generally don’t stray a long way from even money options. An example of this could be used in backing a strong home team to keep a clean sheet against a weaker opponent by selecting “no”.

Asian Handicap

Asian Handicap markets are a popular alternative to regular handicap betting. This bet eliminates a “push” (a drawn outcome of the bet). That means that an Asian Handicap is either going to win or lose and therefore it is regarded as offering more value than traditional handicaps. Highly popular in football matches, quarter and half ball Asian Handicaps come into play to increase options.

Winning Margin

In a football match if there is a winning team then they are going to be victorious in the match by a winning margin. Therefore as an alternative market, a team can be backed to win by a certain margin. An example would be a one goal or a two-goal margin (the most common selections in the market). This is often used when a team is at very short odds in a match outright, in order to seek out more value on that team winning the match. Chelsea could be backed to Win By A 2 Goal Margin home game against Southampton for example at longer odds, which means that it has to be by exactly two goals.

Draw No Bet

The Draw No Bet offers some coverage to a punter on a backed selection in a football match. A team can be backed to win the match, but if they are selected as a Draw No Bet option and the outcome of the match is a draw, then the stake is returned. Naturally, with the extra outcome included in the bet, it comes at a cost of odds compared to backing a team to win in a straight outright bet.

Goal Line Bet

A Goal Line bet is a prediction of how many goals or points are going to be recorded in a match. The outcome of the match isn’t important. For example, in football, a commonly used option in the Goal Line Market is over/under 2.5 goals. The half goal is always included in goal line options so that the bet will always be won or lost. You think Man City v Liverpool is going to be a high scoring game, so you select Over 2.5 Goals as the outcome. A minimum of three goals in the match would be needed for the bet to win. It doesn’t matter which team scores them.

Asian Goal Line

The Asian Goal Line market introduces some different options for over/under goals betting. In some instances, this market is called Alternative Goal Lines as well.

The alternative options in Asian Goal Line betting is in the creation of quarter goal bets, which is a type of interval. What these do basically is split a stake between two different options.

A quarter goal is the midway point between a whole goal and a half goal option. For example, an Asian Goal Line option would be presented as “Over 2, 2.5” which means that the stake played is being split evenly between an Over 2 and an Over 2.5 bet. This creates situations where half wins and half losses can occur in Asian Goal Line betting.

Another different option that Asian Goal Line betting brings as opposed to regular Over/Under markets in football matches, is the use of whole goals. If you back a game to just go Under 2 goals for example and there are exactly two goals scored in the match, this creates a situation of a refund being paid back, because the game neither ended over or under

1X2 Bet

The 1X2 bet is the most simple and common betting market used for sporting events. In a football match the 1 represents a home win, the X a draw and the 2 an away win. It is a straightforward market where one pick from the three potential outcomes is made. You back a Draw (X) for example in the match outright because you think the two teams are evenly matched. The scoreline doesn’t matter, just the result.

Handicap Bet

A traditional handicap bet is where the bookmaker attempts to level the playing field in terms of the two competing teams. For example, if Saracens are a strong favourite at home in a rugby match, then they may be set a -14 point handicap. This means that not only must they win the match, but it must be by a margin of 15 points or more. Similarly, the underdog in that match may be at +14 which is setting the requirement that they don’t lose by a margin bigger than 14 points.


The scorecast market in a football match is a notoriously tough market. That is because it is calling for two correct predictions in the bet from highly unpredictable markets. A Scorecast bet asks for the First Goalscorer and the Correct Score in a match. Harry Kane – Tottenham to Win 2-0 would be an example.


A Wincast is similar to a scorecast bet. This is commonly used in football betting but it is not exclusive to it. In the example of a football Wincast, the two parts of the bet (which are combined into one) are the Winning team and Anytime Goalscorer. The Wincast comes into play because a double cannot be created out of selections from these markets from the same event.

Win To Nil

The Win To Nil bet is backing the winner of football match to keep a clean sheet as well. Both factors in the bet have to happen in order for the bet to be successful. The two options are rolled into one bet for a single unit stake. An example of using this bet type is backing Barcelona To Win To Nil in a home match against a weaker team.

What is a Betting Market? Popular Betting Markets Explained
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What is a Betting Market? Popular Betting Markets Explained
What is a betting market? Find definitions for the most popular markets, including; double chance, draw no bet, 1X2, Asian handicap, goal line and more!
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Best Free Bets
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Article by Lee Jackson

Lee has built a vast working knowledge of different bet types, betting systems, probability and all-important experience. His experience within the betting industry extends to over a decade of researching and writing betting guides. Understanding the statistical and mathematical side of betting is something that fascinates Lee. The study of statistics and implied probability in odds are factors that he finds engaging and important to understanding the inner workings of the practice of betting.