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Betting types - get to know the most popular ones | CaughtOffside

17th September, 22:40

Sports betting is big business with the release and rapid growth in popularity of online gambling through desktop websites and mobile apps meaning it's easier than ever before to back your predictions with cash.

With the return of the Champions League this week, the focus has been on Europe's premier club competition with the likes of offering their tips by backing Real Madrid to beat PSG on Wednesday night.

You can gamble on a wide range of sports, including horse racing, football, greyhounds, tennis, cricket, boxing and plenty more besides. There's also a healthy presence of virtual sports betting and niche markets, such as politics, reality TV and awards. If there's a strong public opinion on the outcome of something you can be sure major betting firms will be offering odds on it.

Check out the app of your favourite online bookmaker and you're also sure to find dozens of markets attached to each and every fixture. These could include match winner, first goal scorer, total rounds, set betting and winning distances. Bet to win, each-way or add your picks together to create a punchy multiple, targeting big returns for a small risk.

It's great to have choice but it's also true the current level of coverage puts a few less experienced backers off playing. What do the different types of bets mean, how do you make sense of all the jargon, how to calculate stakes to minimalize risk and how to bet in order to make a profit?

It's no surprise many are scared off joining the party, but that shouldn't be the case. We introduce you to some of the most popular bets, what they mean and - most importantly - how you can use them to nail down a regular profit.

Single - Win or Place

Modern online betting offers give punters more ways to bet on their favourite sport. You can place a bet on your selection to win or a bet on it to place. You'll often see the each-way terms advertised at the top or bottom of each market.

You have two options on how to bet a selection like a horse to win a race or a football player to score the first goal in a match. If you are betting on the win market, it's straightforward. You are having your stake on the selection to win the race, match or fight. If it's horse racing and you place £5 on your runner to win at 4/1, it'll cost you £5 to play. If the pick finishes first, you'll be paid out as a winner - £20 profit plus your original £5 stake back.

If you'd prefer a bit more of a safety net you can back your selection to place. Again, the place terms will be set out before the event and they are usually between two and four places but make sure it's not a win only event or you'll be wasting your stake. If you make a place bet and the selection finishes in the places mentioned, you'll be paid out for a profit. Unlike each-way betting, there's only one stake in place betting and it makes no difference if your horse or player finishes first or third. The pay-out remains the same.

Each Way

This is a little more complicated but there's nothing here designed to scare you off or spoil your enjoyment of wagering a sports bet. Here you are placing two different bets, so you must multiply your stake by two. The reason for that is you are having one bet on the horse to win and a different wager on it to place.

Again, the place terms will be mentioned before the race. If your selection wins you will be paid out twice for a sizeable profit. If it fails to win but finishes second, third or, sometimes, fourth, the each way part of your bet will be settled as a winner. How much that will be depends on the place terms and the price.

For example, £5 each way on a 4/1 runner is going to cost you £10. If it fails to win but places, you'll often get 1/4 or 1/5 of the price for the place. This type of bet is popular with punters backing outsiders or big priced selections as it has them covered if the pick goes close but fails to win the event. Make sure you are aware of the place terms before making this bet.


The acca is the best loved and most popular way to bet on football but there are now a few exiting twists put on the classic. Acca Insurance, for example, is one of the best offers for football bettors available at the minute. With this promo your bookmaker will refund losing stakes if your acca loses by just one selection. Terms and conditions apply.

Going back to the traditional acca and this is beautiful in its simplicity. It also rates as a real value for money bet. All you have to do is pick four or more selections to win for one stake - £5 for example - and if all do as expected, your stake will accumulate with every correct result until it reaches the last match and the winnings are paid out. You may also be offered a cash out value while your acca is in play and this is an amount given for ending your bet there and then. It can turn a loser into a winner or limit damages from a bad bet.


Forecasts can also be used in football, horse racing or sports betting. A forecast is a bet that challenges you to pick the winner and the runner up in the correct order. For example, a Premier League 2018/19 winning forecast would have been Man City and Liverpool.

This is tough as you must get the first two correct, but the prizes are worth the risk and it gives shrewd backers a chance to really cash in on their knowledge. If an event has a short-priced favourite, like Man City were for most of the season, this is an alternative that will offer players a chance at a bigger price.