Category Archives: Euro 2016

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How are the odds calculated in football betting?

By | Football, Premier League, Euro 2016, The FA Cup, The Champions League | No Comments

All good punters need to have a solid grasp of odds when betting on football, or any other sport for that matter. And the more you know about odds, the more daring and elaborate you can be with your accumulators and or any type of bet.

So, just think how valuable it would be to gain a true understanding of the ways in which bookmakers calculate their odds! Here at Ladbrokes, we think it’s time we let you into the secret…

Bookmakers’ odds and their true value

Quite simply, all bookmakers need to make a profit to stay in business. So rather than calculating odds with true probabilities, bookmakers adjust them slightly to ensure they bring in a profit.


Let’s say that following close analysis of statistics, injuries and so on, a bookie works out the following:

  • Team 1: has a 25% chance of winning
  • Team 2: has a 55% chance of winning
  • There is a 20% chance of a draw between the two sides

As the probabilities above add up to 100%, this means that the bookmaker will neither win nor lose any money.

So to make a profit, the bookmaker adjusts the probabilities, like so:

  • Team 1: has a 32.4% chance of a win after alterations
  • Team 2: has a 54% chance of a win after alterations
  • A draw between the two clubs: 21.6% chance after alterations

The percentages above add up to 108%, which gives the bookmaker an 8% profit margin. In European decimal odds, these odds are displayed as coefficients, like so:

54% = 1.85

32.4% = 3.09

21.6% = 4.63

At the odds stated above, the bookmaker pays out the punter’s stake x 1.85, or 3.09, or 4.63 (depending on the result).

So let’s say a punter splits a £100 stake to put £50 on a win by Team 1, £30 on a win for Team 2 and the remaining £20 on a draw.

In the event that Team 1 wins the match, the bookkeeper must pay out the £50*1.85 = £92.50.

In the event that Team 2 wins, the bookkeeper must hand over 30*3.09 = 92.70

If the game ends in a draw, then the bookie needs to pay out 20*4.63 = £92.60

You see how close the resulting pay outs are? For the example above, we distributed the £100 proportionately to show you how bookies make their money. In essence, they want you to bet this way so they can carry on making a profit no matter what the outcome.

To achieve this, bookmakers balance true probability with public opinion. You rarely see odds contrasting with public opinion. This is because doing so would result in punters making a disproportionate number of wagers on one side of the bet. This would increase risk of loss for the bookmaker, as well as for the punter.

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Balancing the books

A bookie’s job is to balance the books and to make a small amount of profit consistently. For this reason, they don’t look to fleece their customers. Instead, they want to keep them coming back again and again and to reduce the chances of losing money themselves.

The best bookmakers know they can’t balance their books for every single football match. To them, it’s all about spreading risk to manage small changes in profit margins.

Here at Ladbrokes, we understand that this is exactly the way that the most successful punters manage their betting money. By sharing some secrets about the way our industry operates, we also want to show how we’ve built up relationships with our best customers through mutual trust and understanding. Learn more about how to bet on football and other sports in our online betting guide

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How to read football betting odds

By | Football, Premier League, Euro 2016 | No Comments

Football betting odds can be expressed as decimals or fractions. If you’re confused by one or the other (or both) – never fear! Here at Ladbrokes, we aim to make it all easier to understand.

How to understand betting odds?

Well, there isn’t any monetary difference between decimal and fractional odds. They are quite simply two different ways of expressing the same thing.

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Fractional odds

Examples of fractional odds include 1/4 and 7/2. There are many ways to understand the way they work, but the easiest is: [how much will you win] / [how much you stake].

So, if you have odds of 10/1, you stand to win £10 for every £1 you bet. If you bet 7/2, you will receive £7 in winnings, plus your £2 stake.

Odds-on selections

Fractional odds can appear the wrong way round, for example, 2/7 or 1/10.  These are known as ‘odds-on selections’. So in the case of a 1/7 selection, you would have to stake £7 to win £1.

You will see these types of odds when the team you’re betting on is strong favourite to win (or sometimes lose).

Decimal odds

Many punters and even bookmakers consider decimal odds to be much easier to understand than the fractional equivalent. Indeed, for most punters, knowing which is the greater number between 10/6 or 8/5 takes some mental arithmetic (or a calculator).

On the other hand, it’s pretty easy to see straight away that 3.90 is a bigger number than 3.85.

How do I calculate decimal odds?

To work out your winnings, all you need to do is multiply your stake by your decimal odds.

So, if you stake £10 at decimal odds of 4, then your winnings will be £40.

In the case of decimal odds, your stake is included automatically in your returns. In addition, odds of 2.0 represent even money (the same as 1/1). Any decimal odds of less than 2.0 constitute an odds-on bet.

Being able to read and interpret odds will give you a great foundation for picking which team you want to back, as well as how much you’re willing to bet.

Take some time to get to grips with how odds work, and you will be able to choose your stakes quickly and with more confidence.

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England’s most glorious football moments

By | Football, Premier League, Euro 2016, The FA Cup, The Champions League | No Comments

Over the years, England has been one of the most dominant countries in shaping and developing the football world, producing some world-class players, and hosting one of the most prestigious domestic leagues around.

Both on an international and club level, England has seen some incredible football moments, and we’ve listed four of our all-time favourites.

England wins the World Cup in 1966

Back in 1966, England was widely considered to the best national team in the world.

The fact that the tournament was held in England made the national team outright favourites. Despite an uninspiring draw in the first group match, England looked almost unstoppable for the rest of the tournament.

The final itself against West Germany was held at Wembley and was a thrilling match. Finishing 2-2 after 90 minutes, the match exploded in the half an hour of extra time. A dubious second goal from Geoff Hurst – the source of controversy ever since – put the hosts 3-2 in front.

Finally, a third from Hurst in the dying seconds of the game made England world champions for the first – and as yet – only time. Hurst remains the only player to score a hat-trick in a World Cup final.

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Nottingham Forest wins back-to-back European Cups

While Manchester United became the first English club to win the European Cup in 1968, Nottingham Forest remains the only club in the country to achieve the feat twice in a row (1979 and 1980).

What makes the feat even more remarkable is the fact that Nottingham Forest was a relatively small, provincial club that had only won promotion to the top tier of the domestic league in 1977.

This period of unprecedented success means that Brian Clough can lay claim to be one of the greatest English club manager of all time.

Manchester United wins the treble 1999

Manchester United have dominated English football for most of the being the Premier League winners 13 times, and the club achieved its greatest feat in 1999: the year it won the league title, FA Cup and Champions League in a single year.

The thrilling FA Cup semi-final match against then arch-rivals, Arsenal, saw Dennis Bergkamp miss a penalty. Most memorably, it was the match in which Ryan Giggs scored a wonder goal that made a mockery of one of the best defences in the game.

In the Champions League final against Bayern Munich, the Red Devils trailed 1-0 for most of the match. It wasn’t until the last few minutes that substitute Teddy Sheringham equalised at short range, before Ole Gunnar Solskjær scored the winner less than a minute later.

United were the first club to achieve this treble. Such was the scale of this feat that some pundits predict that it is one that will never be repeated.

Liverpool wins the Champions League for a fifth time

After dominating European football in the 1970s and early 1980s, Liverpool FC was a shadow of its former self by 2005.

Having not won the domestic league title since 1991, the Reds got into the Champions League by the skin of their teeth, after finishing fourth in the 2003-04 season.

Liverpool’s form in Europe in 2004-05 contrasted sharply with that in the league. But after getting to the semi-final, they managed to scrape past Premier League champions Chelsea to face AC Milan in the final.

During the final, Liverpool were trailing 3-0 at half-time and it didn’t look good for the then four-time champions. But after clawing three goals back over a thrilling six-minute period, Liverpool went on to win the match in a penalty shootout.

As this was the fifth time that Liverpool were crowned champions of Europe, they were allowed to keep the European Champion Clubs’ Cup permanently.

With one of the most respected domestic leagues in the world, there is little wonder that English football has produced some incredible moments, from underdog clubs exceeding all expectations to ultimate national success.


Euro 2016: Superfan Stories

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They say money won’t buy you happiness, let alone victory. But it could put you under the same piece of French sky as your home squad while they battle it out at Euro 2016. And we reckon that’s as close to euphoria as anyone on this sweet earth can get.

These dedicated supporters have gone the extra mile so they can be there to embrace the complete emotional experience, from the tragedy to the triumph, live at this year’s tournament. Read on to learn about the three superfans who will do whatever it takes in order to reach the dream of Euro 2016.

Parrish Walton, Atlanta, Georgia, USA

Pictured: Parrish (left) and his brother Derek

It’s taken two and a half years of planning and saving, but Parrish Walton and his brother, Derek, will soon travel the 4,382 miles that lie between Atlanta and Paris to launch their Euro 2016 scheme.

“This trip came up in conversation in December of 2013, and we began putting away some money each month soon thereafter,” Parrish says. It’s been an epic countdown ever since.

“This trip came up in conversation in December of 2013, and we began putting away some money each month soon thereafter,” Parrish says.

Nearly 30 months later and they’ll be on their way, headed to France to watch four games live at the tournament: Spain vs Croatia, Portugal vs Hungary and two of the Round of 16 matches.

His loyalty lies with France, and Parrish says he’s hoping to see his team play in Lyon’s new stadium. However, he can’t help but admit a soft spot for Portugal’s star striker: “Ronaldo live and in person is something I can’t wait to see.”

Parrish, who works as a copywriter, says he has spent about half of his annual holiday leave on this trip – and that’s not all. Though the brothers booked their seats as soon as the airline released them and will be staying with family whilst they’re in Paris, Parrish says it’s a good thing they started saving early.

“Between flight costs and hotels and tickets, it won’t be cheap,” he says.

They plan on making the most of their trip by taking in the sights as well as attending the fan zones. Parrish says he’s most looking forward to exploring France and spending some quality European time with his brother.

“And awesome soccer, of course,” he adds.

Whatever name you call it, we’re sure it certainly will be awesome.

Ostap Kukhar, living in — USA, originally from Ukraine

Pictured: Ostap Kukhar

Would you voyage across the Atlantic to cheer on a team with 80/1 odds?

Well, that’s exactly what Ostap Kukha, a student in the USA, is doing this year – from June 11-25, he’ll be in France, watching Ukraine battle it out against Northern Ireland, Germany and Poland at Euro 2016.

With plans to travel with his family, he’s been looking forward to it since they booked tickets in December. A cousin from Ukraine will make the trek across Europe to meet them at the tournament, provided he can obtain a visa to gain entry into France.

“I wouldn’t be able to afford the accommodation and I would probably stay in a hostel,” he says. “My tickets to the games would also have to be cheaper.”

“This trip was a gift from my parents,” Ostap says. “I always wanted to go to a major soccer tournament.”

Originally from Ukraine, Ostap says if he was still living there and had to fund the holiday himself it would be a completely different experience.

“I wouldn’t be able to afford the accommodation and I would probably stay in a hostel,” he says. “My tickets to the games would also have to be cheaper.”

“I think I would still go, though,” he adds.

He is most excited for the Ukraine vs Poland game, which is set to pit two evenly-matched sides against each other in their last game of the group stage.

“It will probably be win or go home for both teams. The two countries also have complex relationship,” he says.

Ostap plans to make the most of his long-haul journey, visiting Paris and Marseille, and taking a road-trip along the south coast during his stay. However, what he’s really buzzing for is the footballing experience.

“The fans, atmosphere, meeting people from all over the world,” he says. “I think the games will be close and I hope I will be celebrating victories with my compatriots.”

And what if those odds start to look a little bit friendlier?

“I would strongly consider coming back.”

Two journeys across the Atlantic in the space of a month? Now that’s a superfan.

And what about the rest of us?

We, who drink weak tea in leaky stadiums. Strain our necks to glimpse the screen through the jungle of heads in the pub. Get told off for being late to Sunday lunch.

We, who feel crushing disappointment and overwhelming joy in endless cycles. Who curse, cheer, cry, and then order another beer.

It has all led up to this.

Wherever you are, we hope you can make the most of Euro 2016. Odds are, it’s going to be a tournament to remember.

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An introduction to the UEFA European Championship

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The UEFA European Championship, also known as ‘The Euros’, is a competition contested by national football teams throughout Europe.

The Euros is held every four years, alternating in even-numbered years with the World Cup, and is one of the world’s most popular sporting events.

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A pan-European football tournament was first proposed in 1927 by Henri Delaunay, one of the early architects of the FIFA World Cup.

However, it was not until 1958 that the Euros (then called the UEFA European Nations Cup) came into being. The first of these tournaments occurred in 1960 and has been held every four years since then.

In 1980, the number of teams that could participate in the Finals was increased from four to eight. This changed to 16 teams in 1996 and as of Euro 2016, 24 teams will take part.

Host nations

Since the competition began in 1960, each tournament has been hosted in a different country, and the host nation for Euro 2016 is France. However, the 2020 competition will see a change in format.

Despite bids from Scotland/Wales, Turkey, Georgia/Azerbaijan and the Republic of Ireland, UEFA have decided that Euro 2020 will be hosted in several different cities across Europe.


The host nation qualifies automatically. 53 other teams have to fight it out for the 23 remaining places in the competition proper.

These teams are drawn into Groups A-H (eight groups of six teams; one group of five). Each group winner and runner-up qualifies for the finals alongside the best-placed runner-up from all eight groups.

The eight remaining third-placed teams take part in two-legged play-offs to decide the four remaining places.

Final tournament

The tournament begins with another group stage. The 24 teams are drawn into six groups of four. Every group winner, every runner-up and the four best third-placed teams progress to the final 16.

At this point, the Euros become a knockout competition with four rounds:

The Round of 16: Eight matches

Quarter-Finals: Four matches

Semi-Finals: Two matches

Final: The two winners of each semi-final play against each other. The winning team become the European Champions.

If any match ends in a draw after 90 minutes, an extra 30 minutes are played (in two 15-minute halves).

If the scores are still level after this period of extra-time, the winner is decided in a penalty shootout.

The Henri Delaunay Trophy

The Henri Delaunay Trophy – named after the competition’s creator – is awarded to the winner of the European Championship. Delaunay died five years before the first tournament in 1960.

Delaunay’s son, Pierre, created the original trophy in his father’s honour and in 2008, a slightly-modified version of the trophy was unveiled.

Former Winners

  • Spain – 3 (1964, 2008, 2012)
  • Germany – 3 (1972, 1980 as West Germany) (1996)
  • France – 2 (1984, 2000)
  • Denmark – 1 (1992)
  • Greece – 1 (2004)
  • Italy – 1 (1968)
  • Netherlands – 1 (1988)
  • Soviet Union USSR – 1 (1960)
  • Czechoslovakia (now credited to the Czech Republic) – 1 (1976)

The European Championships have been through many changes. From 1960 to 1980, only eight teams took part in the competition.

Now, with 24 teams taking part, the expanding nature of the competition is proof of its continuing popularity and prestige.

Despite a record number of teams vying to take part, there have only been nine winners since the competition began.

The unlikely wins of Denmark in 1992 and Greece in 2004 show that anything is possible. In fact, the competition can sometimes be a goldmine for savvy punters.

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How to place a bet on a football match online

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While some people still love going into their local Ladbrokes betting shop, our website now makes it easier and quicker than ever to place a bet.

So if you want to place a bet on a football match, this step-by-step guide shows you how…

Step 1: Visit the Ladbrokes website

Go to the Ladbrokes website to start.

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Step 2: Register an account

This step can put some people off, but our website is designed to make joining as painless as possible. Simply click “JOIN NOW” on the red bar in the top right-hand corner. This will open a registration screen. You can then enter your personal details, create a password and choose your betting currency. You must be 18 or over to register, and the whole process should take you no more than three minutes.

To join even quicker, you can link to your PayPal account via the yellow button in the top left-hand corner of the registration screen.

Step 3: Choose a payment method

The easiest way to deposit money in your Ladbrokes account is to use your credit/debit card. Yet we also offer a number of payment methods for your convenience. The minimum deposit and withdrawal times vary from one payment method to another.

You can then choose your preferred method and deposit the amount of your choice. Our website is very secure. With this in mind, you can be sure that your personal details and money are in safe hands.

Choosing your deposit amount

If you’re new to football betting, please be aware that you don’t have to deposit a large amount: it is crucial never to bet what you can’t afford to lose.

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Step 4: Find your bets

Now you’ve got the boring bit done and dusted, it’s time to have some fun placing your bets. If it’s your first bet, we’d suggest putting some thought into your selection. It may be wise to place on bets on teams and/or players whose form you know and understand.

Making your bets on the Ladbrokes site is easy. Just click on the bet you want and our system adds it to your betting slip. If you wish to deselect your choice, just click on it again. When you choose a bet, the rectangle containing the odds for that particular bet will turn green.

As you can see, the Ladbrokes website makes placing your football bets very easy. If you have any issues, our dedicated support team is on hand via phone and email to help whenever you need us.

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Football betting tips: Advanced

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If you’ve mastered the basics of football betting, you may feel ready to take it to the next level.

While there is no such thing as a sure-fire system, there are a few golden rules you should follow if you want to become a truly successful punter.

Know your values

In football betting (and other betting for that matter), good value occurs when bookmakers’ odds offers a reward which outweighs any risk. To figure this out, you need to:

Estimate a side’s chance of winning

Find the best decimal price for your bet

Multiply the chance (%) of a win against the bookie’s odds

Any result of 1.00 or more means the bet has value (and may be worth a punt!)


So if you think that Swansea City have a 50% chance of winning at home, then you will only make the bet if you can find a price better than 2.00. This is because 50% = 0.50 * 2.00 = 1.00 (fair value).

If you continue to make bets with a value of less than 1.00, you will actually lose money over the course of the season.

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Home advantage rules OK

It is widely accepted that football teams tend to perform better at home than if they were away. If you look at pretty much every football league season, you’ll see that teams score more goals at home than they do away over the course of a season.


Let’s assume that in a Premier League season, the total number of wins by home sides is 179 over the course of a season. Let’s also assume there were 86 draws and 115 defeats. It’s clear from these figures alone that the home advantage is very real.

But how much is this advantage? You can work it out by taking the number of home wins and home defeats and divide them by two (179 + 115/2).

First, add up the home wins and home losses, and divide by two. So in this case: (179 + 115) / 2 = 147. This number is the expected number of wins if there was no home advantage for any team.

Now, divide the total number of home wins by the expected number of wins without home advantage (179 / 147 = 1.21). This result tells us that in the league, home teams had a 21% advantage over away teams.

Recent form

Another great way of assessing the wisdom of certain bets is to look closely at recent form (rather than that over the whole season).

The thinking here is that a team on a winning run with a totally fit squad will be full of confidence. This in turn may give them the edge over a historically better team suffering from a short run of bad results.


Injuries can have a hugely negative impact on a side, even if the absent player is part of a strong squad.

Central defenders and goalkeepers often tend to be the difference between winning and losing. If one of those players is missing, then that’s a sign that they could be due a dip in form. This is especially true if the missing player is also the captain.

As we said before, football betting isn’t an exact science. Yet keeping a close eye on these different aspects of the game can give you a better chance of guessing the match outcome correctly.

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Football betting tips: For beginners

By | Football, Premier League, Euro 2016, The FA Cup, The Champions League | No Comments

If you’re new to betting, it would be smart to learn a thing or two before you pick who you are going to stake your money on.

Fortunately, there are a few easy steps you can take to improve your chances of winning money by on the football.

Never bet what you can’t afford to lose

Here at Ladbrokes, the need to bet responsibly is something we take very seriously. So, if you want to keep having fun on your football accumulator or your handicap – don’t overstretch yourself.

Work out what you can afford to lose bet before you start and avoid betting big to counter a losing streak.

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Long shots offer long odds for a reason

We all wish we’d bet on Greece to win Euro 2004 at 250/1. However, such long shots don’t often come in, which is exactly why the odds are long in the first place!

Even at 50/1, if a bookie is willing to offer you £50 for every quid you bet, that team almost certainly won’t hit the jackpot in your lifetime.

Do your homework

Just because your mate is convinced that the only way to win big is by putting his money down on a random 12-team accumulator, it doesn’t mean you should too. Unless you follow the form of the teams you’re thinking of betting on, don’t do it!

After all, the more teams you bet on, the less likely you are to win.

When it comes to placing bets as a beginner, the old Chinese proverb ‘every journey starts with a single step’ is one to remember.

An effective (not to mention easy and cheap) way of learning about the best ways to bet, is to read up on the subject. Keep an eye on form, understand the value of your bets before you make them and you’ll be on to a winner!

Remember to have fun!

Let’s face it – gambling can be really fun. Yet the more seriously you take it, the less likely you are to enjoy the thrill of it all.

If you’re truly committed to bringing in returns on your football betting, you can in the long run. However, we recommend you master the basics first, and move onto more advanced tactics later on.

By following our simple tips, you’ll be well on your way.

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What are ante post bets in football?

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The term ‘ante post’ relates traditionally to bets on horse racing. In fact, the term refers to the way in which punters can bet on a horse before it ‘goes to post’ (starts the race).

These days, more and more people are seeing the benefits of Ante Post bets in football. Of course, there are a few downsides too.

With this in mind, it would be wise to make sure you’re fully in-the-know when making this kind of bet. Here are the positives and some negatives of ante post bets in football.


Better odds

Take a World Cup that is due to happen at a fixed point in the future. You can place a bet on the winner, the tournament’s top scorer, and so on far in advance, potentially giving you greater odds than would be available when the event is about to happen (or has already kicked off).

More time

While it can be easy to get impatient, you should know that with time on their side, this can give you an advantage. After all, it gives you more time to calculate your next move.

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More chances to lose

The advantage of betting on a tournament that is already happening is that you’ll have more of an idea of the state of play. This is not something you tend to benefit from with ante post betting.

For example, say you bet on Robert Lewandowski to score a hat-trick for Poland at the World Cup in 2018. From now until then, Lewandowski could suffer an injury that you have no way of predicting this long before the event. In that case, you lose your stake money.

If you make such a bet on the day of the match and he drops out injured, the bookmaker will return your stake.

As you can see, there are a lot of positives to making ante post bets on the football. Just be patient and err on the side of caution, and you could well be in for a big win at some point in the future.

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What are the different types of goal bets I can place?

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Whether a stunning Wayne Rooney goal from the halfway-line, or a clumsy tap in, a goal is still a goal!

Every one scored can mean the difference between winning and losing. From making millions ecstatic, to having them breaking down in tears, goals are what bring excitement to the beautiful game.

With this in mind, it is no surprise that there are many different goal-related bets for you to make. We’ll take you through the main ones to explain how they all work.


Bookmakers offer odds on the following goal-scorer-related bets:

  • The player to open the scoring (available for every player in every match)
  • A player to score at any point during the game
  • The player who will score the last goal of the game
  • A player to score two or more goals
  • A player to score three or more goals
  • Wincast – involves picking the first goal-scorer and his team to win the match
  • Scorecast – involves predicting both the final score and the first goal-scorer

If you’re chasing big profits and unorthodox odds, Wincast and Scorecast bets are perfect.

Although nothing is guaranteed, if you want more chance of winning and with great odds to boot, first goal-scorer is a relatively safe bet. This is especially true if you bet on an on-form player to open the scoring.

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Goal line betting (also known as ‘over’/‘under’)

Goal line bets are settled on whether there are more or fewer total goals scored in a match than a number set by the bookmaker.

Example: North London derbies (between Spurs and Arsenal) are famous for producing high score lines. In recent years, we’ve seen 5-2 matches, as well as a 5-4 and 5-1 match. With this in mind, some people like put a few quid on there being more than 4.5 goals during this derby.

Many bookies also offer split-line betting (e.g. 2 and 2.5) for those who want more chance of a return. A split-line bet is essentially two separate wagers, since your stake is divided equally between the two lines.

Top scorer

Strikers always enjoy a lot of attention among their teams and opponents alike. The media spotlight is always on them and their shirts normally sell the most in the club shop.

It’s no surprise then that some punters like to bet on who the highest scorer will be over the course of the season.

To score/Not to score

As its name suggests, this is simply a bet that you believe a certain team will score at any point during the match. Extra time in cup competitions doesn’t count.

Variations on this include half-time correct score, and a split half time/full time correct score. The latter is the most difficult to call and therefore commands the highest odds.

Team to score first or last

You may place a bet on whichever team you think will score the game’s first and last goal.

Whether you fancy placing a simple bet on your favourite player scoring during the course of the match, or you want to put money on something a bit more daring in the shape of a Scorecast, there is a wager to suit every type of punter.