How To Bet: Under/ Over Goal Betting Explained

One of the most popular modern day betting markets is the number of goals in a game – usually the Over/Under 2.5 goals line.

This sometimes confuses people who are new to football betting as there is obviously no such thing as half a goal!

So what exactly are you betting on when it comes to Over or Under 2.5 goals?

Allow me to explain.

What Does 2.5 Goals Mean?

The term 2.5 goals is used because you are betting on one of the following:

  • 2 goals or less being scored (The Under 2.5 goals market)
  • 3 goals or more being scored (The Over 2.5 goals market)

The number 2.5 is used because it falls in the middle of both markets.

You either think a game will be a low scoring one with 2 goals or less OR you think there will be goals a-plenty, with 3 goals or more.

If you bet on less than 2.5 goals and the game finishes 0-0, 1-0, 0-1 or 1-1 then your bet is a winner.

Yet if bet on less than 2.5 goals and the game finishes 2-1 or higher, then your bet is a loser.

And as the number of goals on average in a football game hovers around the 2.5 marker (although this varies based on trends, leagues and time of year) then its the usual market on offer.

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Over/Under 1.5, 2.5, 3.5 and More!

The Over/Under 2.5 goals market isn’t the only option available to you though. If we look at the odds for this sample game, we can see a whole range of Over/Under goal lines:

The majority of bookmakers (43) are pricing up the Over/Under 2.5 goals line, but there are also a number at Over/Under +0.5, +1.5, +3.5, and so on.

Although they sound confusing, some of these these lines are actually relatively easy to understand as follows:

  • Over/ Under 0.5 goals means you want either 1 goal (over) or more or no goals (under).
  • Over/ Under 1.5 goals means you want either 2 goals (over) or more or 1 goal or less (under).
  • Over/ Under 3.5 goals means you want either 4 goals (over) or more or 3 goal or less (under).

Other Common Over/Under Goal Lines

The Over/Under lines don’t stop there, as you can often regularly bet on a whole range of other similar markets.

Many bookmakers for example will offer an Over/Under 2 goals betting market. The difference between this and the Over/Under 2.5 goals line is that you get your money back if the game has exactly 2 goals.

Finally to make this just a little more complex, you can also split your stakes by using the Over/Under 2.25 goals market. One half of your stake will go on the 2.5 goals line and the other half on the 2 goals line.

I appreciate this might sound complex so to help explain more, here is a quick summary guide to the different Over/Under lines and what it all means!

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Best Regards,

Peter Ling
Smart Betting Club Editor

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