It’s Europe’s most prestigious club competition and one that attracts interest from all around the world. Millions of viewers tune in to the Champions League final but this thrilling tournament provides amazing action from the very start. The viewing figures suggest that around 400 million people tune in to catch the UCL final. Throughout the long European season, those numbers are preceded by many more millions who tune into each round and the knockout stages.
The Champions League also provides significant interest from the betting community. This is an important competition for the industry which boosts revenue right across the football season. For those that have yet to stake on the UCL, here is a handy guide on what to look for.
Finding the Right Home
Potential players will firstly need to find the right home for their bets. There are literally hundreds of competing sports betting operators out there but not all are created equal. The two key factors to look out for here are choice and value. Choice is provided through a wide range of markets for the Champions League. That value will follow via competitive Champions League betting odds.
Trust is also important, and the established brands should provide a better place in which to get involved. Once that initial part of the process has been taken care of, bettors can then consider the markets open to them.
Outright betting markets are also referred to as ‘futures’ which offers a clue on what to expect. The most popular of these is a stake on the Champions League winner. At the start of the season, all of the bookmakers involved will publish the odds for all qualified teams. That market will remain in place for the entirety of the competition. Once the first ball is kicked, it will switch to the live odds where it will be open until the winning team lifts the trophy.
There will be other futures options to consider. Most operators will also publish odds for a team to reach the final, and it will also be possible to bet on the competition’s leading goal scorer.
Finding Your Match
Every single match in a Champions League season will have odds attached to it. The most common of these is the result with prices for either team to win, plus a third option for the draw. This remains the most popular bet for many but there are plenty of alternatives. These can often be divided into two sections: Bets relating to individual players and those based on the two teams.
Goals win games and there will be markets attached to individual goalscorers. Who will score the first goal? Those that have an opinion on this can stake on who they think will find the net first. Sportsbook customers will also be able to speculate on who will score the last goal and whether or not a player will find the net in 90 minutes.
Options for players to score at least two, or at least three goals can appear in places. Goals are a positive thing but that’s not the case for red and yellow cards. A small number of sportsbooks also publish discipline markets based on whether a player will be booked or sent off.
Both Teams to Score is a good place to start when discussing this type of bet. It’s one of the more popular options and one of the reasons behind that lies with its simplicity. There are just two options involved – yes or no. Making the right choice on Both Teams to Score isn’t always straightforward but it’s an easy concept to follow.
Another popular bet relates to the number of team goals. How many times will those sides find the net in 90 minutes? There will be options for each individual team, together with a Combined Goals bet which will cover the number of goals scored in the game.
Sportsbooks will set a series of lines such as 2.5, 3.5, 4.5 and so on. It’s now up to the bettor to decide whether to stake Over or Under one of those lines. The top betting sites could have hundreds of these side markets available for each Champions League match. In some parts of the world they are called proposition or ‘prop’ bets. Additional ‘props’ can include Winning Margin, Total Corners, Half Time Result, Team to Score First and Much More.
Compare and Contrast
Betting on the UCL is similar to betting on the English Premier League. In both cases, there is that initial need to find the right sportsbook. A choice of markets at exceptional odds remains important. The markets are also virtually identical. Both competitions will have options to bet on the outright winner and the leading goal scorer across the season. In each individual game, bettors can also expect to see extensive betting options for each fixture.
There are very few differences: The Champions League is a knockout competition and that’s why sportsbooks publish an option to bet on who will reach the final. The EPL is a league which is played out over a long campaign and there is no final game.
That’s really the only difference between the two tournaments from a betting perspective. Comparisons can be made, but the Champions League is out there on its own as one of the most popular football competitions for spectators and bettors alike.