A FIFA World Cup provides plenty of entertaining wagering opportunities: we look at the various, strange, and outright odd markets available to punters.
Aside from the amazing football being played, the best thing about the FIFA World Cup is all of the strange and wonderful markets that our betting partners have available for us to ‘play’ in.
In this section, we look for the ‘Top 5 Weird Bets’ that people can investigate over the next month.
#1 – Total number of goals scored in the tournament
This bet spans the tournament’s 64 games, and the disparity in quality between some teams in the group stage means there’s value to be found with Ladbrokes’ 171 or more goals at $2.75.
- 169 goals in the 2018 World Cup
- 171 goals in the 2014 World Cup
With teams in the group stage that, with all due respect, may not have the usual tournament ranking, there should be some blowouts that help push that total number up and get us to that promised land of 171 and over.
— $2.75 for 171 or more goals in the tournament (via Ladbrokes)
#2 – The number of matches that will go to overtime
The best thing about knockout football in tournaments is the possibility of games going to overtime.
That’s where we see players dig deep and maintain composure under extreme pressure, which is exacerbated in a World Cup due to the back-to-back nature of the games.
The number of extra-time games in the last five World Cups since the turn of the century is as follows:
- 2018 – 5 \s2014 – 8
- 2010 – 4
- 2006 – 6
- 2002 – 5
The average is 5.6, and the evenness of this year’s competition among some of the top teams suggests that we’re in for a lot of extra-time football, especially during the knockout stages.
The value play is having 6 or more matches go to extra time.
— At least six matches will go to extra time: $4.33 (via Ladbrokes)
#3 – Total goals for Australia
It almost feels anti-patriotic to say this, but this Australian team isn’t as good as previous teams we’ve sent to World Cups.
Australia is fortunate to be in the tournament after making it through the playoff.
They have been drawn in a difficult group that includes one of the favorites, France, as well as Denmark and Tunisia, neither of which will be walkovers.
Given the squad that Australia has named, it’s difficult to predict where the goals will come from.
With some strong defenses to contend with, under 2.5 goals for the tournament is the best bet.
— Under 2.5 goals, Australia: $1.66 (via OKBET)
#4 – Determine the finalists
We need a lot of things to go our way to get this one right, which is why it’s so expensive.
Given how good both teams have looked in the build-up and the depth of their squads, Brazil vs. France is the ideal World Cup final.
For this final to take place, both of them must win their groups and end up on opposite sides of the draw.
From there, all they have to do is win and advance to the finals (not so difficult when you think about it!).
This appears to be the most likely of the market options available through Ladbrokes.
— France vs. Brazil in the World Cup Final: $17. (via Ladbrokes)
England midfielder Bukayo Saka (C) reacts after failing to score a decisive penalty in the UEFA EURO 2020 final penalty shootout. Photographer: Paul ELLIS / POOL / AFP
#5 – How England was defeated.
This is purely for laughs, but there is a touch of form behind it.
England has lost eight (yes, EIGHT) penalty shootouts in major tournaments in the last thirty years.
There was, of course, the Euro final last year, as well as in 2004 and 2012.
There have been three World Cup knockout losses: in 1990 against West Germany, in 1998 against Argentina when they were expected to win the tournament, and in 2006 against Portugal in the quarter-finals.
It would be cruel to send them out like this again, but it would be hilarious.
At $6? It’s worth it for the laughs alone.
— England will be eliminated through penalties: $6 (via bet365)
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