Favourite / Underdog

For Intermediate

The beauty of sports betting online is that, depending on your sports betting provider, you can find interesting markets and side bets to help boost your profits. This is especially true with simple 2 way bets like Over/Under bets and betting on the favourite to win or the outsider (underdog).

If you are just starting out with online sports betting, choosing a simple 2-way bet like Over/Under or Favourite/Underdog can be a fun and interesting way to bet. However, you will need to know a bit about the sport or teams that allow for such bets. Having a good favourite or underdog betting strategy will also help to get the most out of these easy bets.

Favourite/Underdog option can also be used in other bets, such as the slightly more complicated 3-way bet, which features a favourite to win option (1), a draw option (X), and an underdog to win option (2). You can also further enhance your favourite or underdog bet by hedging the bet slightly with a Draw Bet Strategy.

Whether you are new to betting on sports online, or an old hand, our guide to playing the favourite or underdog bet will show you how you can add this to your normal betting strategy.

Favourite/Underdog Quick-Facts

  • Favourites to win are usually the stronger team going into the match.
  • Underdog teams are usually weaker or lower ranking teams going into the match.
  • Betting on the underdog can often produce surprise victories, deliver better odds and stronger profits.
  • Favourite/Underdog options can be used in live betting.
  • You can play favourite or underdog bets from your mobile betting platform.
  • Many sports feature favourite / underdog bets including soccer, basketball, American football, hockey, tennis and more.

Betting on the Favourite – Is it Always a Good Idea?

Even if you are completely new to online sports betting, the term “favourite”immediately lets you know that you should probably be betting on them. Favourites are so named because both the bookies and the punters believe that they are a sure thing to win. But there have been plenty of historic upsets in the past that proves that this isn’t always the case.

So, should you always bet on the favourite to win?

Small dog vs big dog

Favourites are almost always those teams that appear at the top of the log or table. They are the teams that have been performing well all season, scoring goals consistently, keeping strong players in rotation, and winning their matches frequently. However, this doesn’t mean that the favourite to win is always a team near the top of the rankings. Sometimes an underdog team that has been pushing hard all season, and has been steadily climbing through the ranks, can be the favourite on the day.

This is why always playing the favourite can sometimes blow up in your face. Not only that, there are other potential disadvantages to betting on the favourite which you should consider.

One of the biggest disadvantages to betting on the favourite is that it is a comparatively low risk bet. Since the likelihood of them winning is pretty high, the odds that you can expect from the favourites bet will be relatively low. Betting on the outsider or underdog is always considered the riskier bet, which is why you’ll often find the odds for the underdog bet, conversely higher.

The “Underdog” Bet – Risky, but Will it Pay off?

The Favourite/Underdog bet is always a two way kind of bet, two sides of a coin if you will. While the favourite is the safer option, the underdog bet is the potential wild card, and comes with plenty of risk. But is it worth it?

The reason why betting on the underdog is so attractive to many bettors, is the higher odds (10.00 or more) that you get with it. In order to attract more bettors to the match, sports betting providers will boost the odds on the non-favourite bet. Sure, it is the risky option and the chances of losing your money are high, but if they pull off a victory you could be laughing all the way to the bank!

Favourites/Underdog Strategy Considerations

Iceland fans

Knowing when to choose the favourite or the underdog is not an easy decision and each comes with its own perils and pitfalls. Simply picking the favourite to win just because that’s what everyone is doing is not always the smart play. There is always that day when the underdog shows its true fighting spirit and wins the day.

An effective favourites/underdog strategy starts with research and analysis of both players and teams. A thorough examination of their performance to date helps to establish an indication of possibilities going into the match.

Ask yourself:

  • How has each team performed thus far?
  • Are key players available for the match?
  • What are the underdog team’s strengths and weaknesses, can they come from behind? Have they done so before?
  • Who’s better at offense? Who’s got their defensive game together?
  • Consider the available stats for both teams or both players

Favourite/Underdog FAQ

  • What sports will I be able to find the favourites/outsider bet?

    Virtually any sport that features a 2-way or a 3-way betting option for winner, loser and draw (for the 3-way bet) will feature the option to bet on the favourite or the outsider (underdog). This includes popular sports like soccer, rugby, MMA, tennis, American football, basketball, hockey, handball and many more.
  • Can I find value in the favourites or outsider bet?

    Yes, you can. This is especially true for the outsider or underdog bet, where the bookies consider the chances of them winning to be slim. You’ll usually find the best odds are on this bet and, if it pays off, will be worth the risk involved.
  • Can I use favourite to win or outsider bets in live betting?

    Yes, you can. Live betting options will cover almost all betting options including 1 X 2 bets, Over/Under bets and of course, favourite/underdog bets.

Final Thoughts on Favourite/Underdog Betting

Betting on the favourite to win has always seemed like a sure thing and, in most instances, it is. However, taking a chance and betting on the outsider is often not only a more exciting proposition, it also comes with better odds. Pulling off the outsider bet is a fantastic feeling and can make a huge difference to your profits. Why not try your hand at betting on favourites or underdogs at one of our recommended sportsbooks now?

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