Everyone who watches football, let alone avid followers and fans, is aware of the popularity of the UEFA Champions League. The football competition is the most popular international annual club football competition. Football punters also see the competition as a opportunity to make good money by following Champions League betting tips.
Each year, the European giants, the largest, wealthiest and best clubs in Europe meet in the Champions League, in the group stages and the knockout stage. Every year the competition delivers thrills and excitement up to the very end, up to the final match. The black market ticket prices for the Champions League Final often go up to thousands of pounds.
Under the current format 32 teams participate in the group stages of the competition. Some teams qualify directly to the group stages, but others have to pass through a qualifications stage.
The total number of teams that participate in the Champions League, if we include the qualifications stage, is 78 or 79. The Champions League was founded many years ago in 1955, but it was re-branded in 1992.
Popular Betting Competition among Punters
The final match of the Champions League is usually held towards the end of May or the beginning of June. It is one of the most watched football matches, after the World Cup Final. The 2015/16 Champions League Final was watched by an estimated 380 million people. Punters usually wager the most on matches that are televised and millions are wagered on the Champions League final.
However, punters don’t bet only on the Final. Champions League betting is available on all other individual matches, including the qualifications matches. It is also possible to place wagers on the outcome of the tournament as a whole. This as well as certain aspects of it, or the performance of individual teams. It is not always easy to give Champions League betting advice regarding particular matches. However there are general tips and suggestions that will help you be more successful at Champions League betting.
Outright Betting on the Champions League
At the beginning of the season, or even during its course it is possible to place a so called outright bet on the team that you feel might win the Champions League. Making such a prediction is not easy, as there are always at least few teams who are evenly matched. Moreover, before the beginning of the season it is hard to predict whether a team is going to be in a good form. An injury of a key player might seriously diminish a club’s chances for winning the Champions League.
But, where one punter sees risk, others see opportunity. The odds on teams who are not considered to be among the top favourites for winning the Champions League can be particularly high. If you have a strong reason to believe that a team is going to win the Champions League, perhaps you should consider placing an outright bet. Just beware that it is not that easy to predict the winner of the Champions League. The best betting advice here would be to bet a smaller amount of money.
‘To Reach the Knockout Stage’ Bets
There are many other bets that are placed before the seasons commences or at the very beginning and are settled at the end or towards the end of the season. For example, there are teams who usually perform well in the Champions League, but you’re not quite convinced that they can claim the title.
Most bookmaker sites will also let you bet that a team will reach the knockout stage, or even go as far as reaching the semi-finals.
These bets are offered at lower wagers. However the likelihood of that happening is much bigger than the likelihood of the team winning the Champions League. Plus, you may also combine such wagers and bet that multiple teams will reach the knockout stage. This will increase the odds and the potential winnings. Alternatively, if you feel that a smaller and a less renowned team will manage to cause an upset and reach the knockout stage, you may get pretty favourable odds.
Champions League Betting Upsets Are Possible
No specific Champions League betting advice can be given in this case, as each season is different and all teams are different, but sometimes it is worth taking a risk.
For example, nobody in 2004 believed that Porto will eliminate Manchester United, but they did. And certainly nobody, perhaps not even Rafa Benitez believed at the beginning of the 2004/05 season that Liverpool will manage to lift the Champions League trophy at the end of the season, but they did.
Betting a few quid on the underdogs, may bring you a nice sum of money in the end, and if you lose it’s really no big deal.
Also, bear in mind that you may bet on the winner of the Champions League or whether a team will reach the knockout stage even after the competition has begun. Even at the point when the Champions League has reached the group stage or at a later point than that. The odds may be lower at that stage. However you will also have a clearer picture of how certain teams perform and what can be expected of them.
Individual Match Betting
Betting on individual Champions League matches is the type of betting that attracts more interest. Firstly because there are multiple matches that are held throughout the football season and you don’t have to wait for months, weeks or even days for the outcome. You can place a wager on a Tuesday and then place another one on Wednesday. Furthermore, you also have the option of combining multiple matches in the same bet slip, either as a system bet or an accumulator bet, or combine Champions League matches with other matches.
During the qualifications stage, teams can’t afford to risk anything and that’s why stronger teams usually select their best squad even if they are facing significantly weaker opponents. Certain surprises do happen, but usually teams of the stronger leagues which have to qualify playing against other clubs manage to reach the knockout stage.
When you’re betting on matches of the qualifications stage, it is best to check the statistics of the respective teams. See how many goals they usually score in such or similar matches. Betting on the winner market, especially if you plan on betting that the team which are considered to be the favourite will not bring you any money. However a bet that the team will win both halves, or that they’ll lead at halftime and win the match, or that they’ll win and there’ll be more than 2.5 goals will be more lucrative. Also, it is wise to combine a few selections, if not in an acca, at least a double or a treble.
Another sound Champions League betting advice is that the rematch in a qualifications or a knockout matchup is always easier to predict than the first match. That is not always and necessarily true, but there is something to it, definitely.
Champions League Matches Can Be Goal-Fests
That is especially so when the team that plays the second match at home, lost the first match. It is clear that the team has to pursue a victory if they want to reach the next stage. If they have lost by more than one goal, they’ll probably start attacking from the first minute. Teams that attack leave their defence more vulnerable and can also concede. It doesn’t take an expert to conclude that such matches might very likely end with 3 or more goals. However, the bookmakers are also aware of that and they might lower the odds on such bets. That is why you should consider other riskier options.
You may bet that the home team will win and that both teams will score. Or that both teams will score and there will be more than 2.5 goals. The odds for those selections are significantly higher than the odds that there will be more than 2.5 goals.
Teams don’t usually give up in the Champions League until the last whistle of the second match, but is pretty clear that when one of the teams has won the first match by a wide margin, they will probably go through the next stage. In most cases, a lot of goals are scored in the second match as both teams are not playing under strong pressure.
Do Your Homework
When it comes to the group stage, there are often surprises in Champions League betting here. Often stronger teams are beaten by teams that hail from smaller countries. On few occasions, a team that is worth less than just one of the players of the opposing team still managed to win a match. When teams have a busy schedule, a lot of injured players or a very important league or cup game ahead of them, they may not play on their usual level. In such cases you may consider backing the underdogs to win the match.
Special Champions League Bets
Many bookmakers offer special bets on Champions League matches, especially for matches in the later stages on the competition. You may be able to bet not only that a certain player will score a goal, or on the total number of corners or yellow and red cards, but also on things like whether a certain player will score a header, or a goal from outside the 18-yard box.
It is very difficult to give specific advice on such betting options. The offered Champions League betting markets are often unique and are not offered too often. It is wise to check with operators that offer such specific markets and analyse them carefully, you may find good value there. Still, don’t be fooled and bet too much on an unusual market, chances are, it is not very probable for it to happen.
General Betting Tips
Some things are always the same, regardless whether you’re betting on the Champions League or other competitions. Firstly, be careful with your bankroll. That is the most important betting advice for any punter.
Never bet more than 3% of your total bankroll on a single wager, regardless whether it is a single, a double/treble or an acca bet.
Champions League betting on the favourite to win against an obvious underdog may be offered at odds that don’t reflect the actual chances. Often too many punters bet on the favourite because they are convinced that it is certain that they’ll win. The bookmakers than lower the odds, because if the favourites lose by any chance, they’ll have to pay out huge sums of money. Thus, the odds are often lower than they should be and you don’t get any value on such bets.
Champions League Bonuses and Promotions
Bookmakers, as you know offer a lot of bonuses and promotions. Many of them also apply to Champions League betting. For example, if a bookmaker offers to match your first bet, or double it or triple it with a free bet bonus, then that bonus can be claimed if you place your first bet on a Champions League match.
But in addition to that, many bookmakers also offer special Champions League betting bonuses. These bonuses are most often money-back bonuses. Some operator offer a bonus on players who placed a first goal scorer wager on a Champions League wager, where if the selected player scores second instead of first, the punter is given their initial wager back as a free bet. Or, if you place a first goal scorer bet and the same player manages to score the first goal and another goal during the match, then you can receive an amount double the size of the actual expected win.
Enhanced odds bonuses are often offered on popular Champions League matches. With this bonus, players who place the bet on which the bonus is offered will receive the standard winning amount in cash and the rest as bonus money. If a bookmaker is a sponsor of a team that participates in the Champions League, it may offer special bonuses on match betting and future bets that involve its team. If you planned on betting on that team anyway, perhaps you should consider placing a bet at the bookmaker that is the team’s sponsor.