Betting the Totals in Soccer

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Guide to the over/under 2.5 goals betting market

Betting the Totals in SoccerIn this day and age, if you head to a bookmaker and check out any game of football you’ll find an amazing number of markets available – the match result, correct score and half time/full time are the most popular of these, but you can basically bet on anything. One of the most interesting markets for me is the over/under 2.5 goals, as it offers the chance to really get involved in thinking about how the game will play out from a tactical point of view.

I’ve divided this article into two sections. The first section is based upon the time before the game takes place, and what you can pick out from the line-ups. The second section is based upon the start of the actual game and what you can deduce from this early play. Together, these pieces will help make betting on soccer totals a key element in your betting strategy arsenal. 

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Planet Mark's Top Rec:

32Red are giving the old 'High Street Bookies' sports betting brands some real trouble in 2019.

This very slick site offers top-rated odds; a huge range of bets and a big list of player promotions (really, check the latest before you bet elsewhere). This now includes an excellent 100% profit boost offer for all new players.

32Red are my go-to betting site, you’ll quickly find out why once you see www.32red.com/sports for yourself - check them now!

 

30181

 

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Over/Under 2.5 Goals – Pre-Game

Before we even start looking at the line-ups, there is one basic fact that should be evident immediately when betting on this market. The bigger the disparity between the two teams, the more goals will be scored in the game, meaning that the price for the ‘over 2.5 goals’ will be lower in these games.

It’s always a good idea to take a look at the odds before the team line-ups are announced, so you’ll have a feel for the market immediately – but don’t even think about placing a bet yet. If you are betting without actually knowing the teams you are effectively betting blind.

Around an hour before any game the teams are announced. This is where you should get to work. There are a few things that you can look out for.

  1. Are there any major changes to the defence of a team, including the goalkeeper? The more settled a defensive unit is, the less likely they are to concede. However, if there are changes at the back, this can have a big effect, especially if they are in central defence or a keeper is out – here you should be veering towards backing over 2.5 goals.
  2. Is the player who makes the assists for a team playing? If so, who does he make the assists for mostly? Is this player playing as well? If yes to both of these, then the team is obviously more likely to score. If no to either, then you might want to look more at under 2.5 goals.
  3. Look at the forward line for both teams. Obviously if that star striker is out, then this will have an effect on the goal scoring prospects of a team.
  4. Look at the likely formations. It’s not always immediately evident which formation a team is playing, but if a team is clearly setting up defensively, with just a lone striker (especially if that is the away team) then obviously this enhances the chances of under 2.5 goals.

Over/under 2.5 goals betting marketOver/Under 2.5 goals – Early Game

The first ten minutes of a game can tell you an awful lot about the prospects of there being goals in the game. Here are some pointers you can look for.

  • If a team has come to play for a draw and therefore only interested in stopping the other team scoring, how good do they look in possession? If they are passing it around at the back comfortably and look good on the ball, this is always a good pointer for backing ‘under 2.5 goals’. The longer they can go without conceding, the more their confidence will grow. Conversely, if that defensive set-up team looks under pressure from the start, has little possession and have given the ball away a couple of times, or is already hoofing it up field, this should be shouting ‘over 2.5 goals’. Also, look at the opposition – are they really pushing for that first goal, or are they playing patiently, figuring they’ll break them down eventually?
  • How high are the defensive lines of both teams?  Two teams both playing with a high line can lead to a very congested midfield, which can make for a really scrappy game. However, look to see if there are players who can exploit this high line – ideally a striker with great pace latching onto a ball from that quick thinking midfielder. If that striker has already had an opportunity or two (maybe got caught offside by half a yard) then you should be thinking goals.
  • How often is the playmaker of a team receiving the ball, and how much time/space has he when in possession? If the team can’t get the ball to this player, or he is closed down every time he gets possession, then this points to a lack of goals. A playmaker who has time on the ball to spot that pass should veer you towards overs. (It can be an idea to pick out these players before a game and watch them the closest).
  • Keep an eye on the ref. Is he letting the little things go, or is he clamping down on stuff immediately. A picky ref can lead to a stop-start game, which is never ideal for goals.
  • Is there a clear mismatch on the wings in terms of pace? If that winger has already skinned the full back once, he’ll want to do it over and over – this is another good pointer for goals. If the full back has the winger in his pocket, this will obviously mean fewer chances.

As you can see, there is an awful lot to think about when placing a bet in the under/over 2.5 goals market. However, if you consider all of the above factors both before the game and in the early part of it, you’ll be in great shape to place that bet. There is also nothing more satisfying than when you’ve placed that bet and the game has gone exactly to plan.

Remember that not all bookies will have the same odds on offer, and shopping around for the best value will make a major difference over time. 

Planet Mark's Top Rec:

32Red are giving the old 'High Street Bookies' sports betting brands some real trouble in 2019.

This very slick site offers top-rated odds; a huge range of bets and a big list of player promotions (really, check the latest before you bet elsewhere). This now includes an excellent 100% profit boost offer for all new players.

32Red are my go-to betting site, you’ll quickly find out why once you see www.32red.com/sports for yourself - check them now!

 

30181

 

Planet Mark's Top Rec:

32Red are giving the old 'High Street Bookies' sports betting brands some real trouble in 2019.

This very slick site offers top-rated odds; a huge range of bets and a big list of player promotions (really, check the latest before you bet elsewhere). This now includes an excellent 100% profit boost offer for all new players.

32Red are my go-to betting site, you’ll quickly find out why once you see www.32red.com/sports for yourself - check them now!

 

30181

 

Planet Mark's Top Rec: There are a lot of good reasons why Bovada are the number #1 US friendly sportsbook. Look beyond the big welcome bonus and you'll find the real magic...

Bovada have a huge range of markets (especially when it comes to the bigger events), competitive lines and super-easy deposits / withdrawals.

The killer reason is the promos – you’ll find their list of offers for regular bettors unrivalled anywhere online. Check out www.bovada.lv to see the latest deals for yourself now!

Bovada Sportsbook

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