Soccer is the biggest sport in the world globally, and in the club game at least, the Champions League is the most lucrative and sought-after prize. With Europe boasting the world’s biggest clubs and best players, it’s no surprise that this continental competition attracts interest from fans and bettors from all around the world.
For your Champions league betting experience, it’s definitely worth checking out the best sites and best betting apps Australia to maximize enjoyment and potential returns. But what do you need to know when betting on the Champions League? Here’s our guide:
Know when it’s on and the format
The Champions League is a competition that is huge in scope. Although the group stages don’t begin until September, the qualifying rounds begin long before. In fact, in the 2022/23 season, the initial preliminary qualifying round fixtures were played on 7th June, long before the traditional season-starting time in most of the big European Leagues.
With this year’s final to be played on 10th June in Istanbul, the competition itself is more than a year in duration, although this is factoring in the first ever winter World Cup, which saw seasons begin earlier and finish later than usual.
Know who’s in it (and how the teams qualify)
The Champions League features a total of 78 teams from 54 of the 55 member nations of UEFA. The exception is Liechtenstein, which has no domestic league. Qualification is dependent on the domestic league finishing position in the previous campaign.
The big four leagues of England, Italy, Germany, and Spain have four automatic qualifiers, while both France and Portugal possess two automatic qualifiers as well as a team each (the third-place finishers domestically) that enters into the third qualifying round. Counties then have two or one qualifiers depending on the relative strength of the league (according to the UEFA coefficient) and the point of entry is also decided by the coefficient.
The result is 78 teams whittled down to 32 teams by the time the competition reaches the group stage. The winner of the previous season’s Europa League is also permitted to enter the Group Stage if the same team did not qualify through league position.
In short, the Champions League offers an incredible number of betting opportunities throughout the year. Nearly all matches are played on a Tuesday or Wednesday evening (European time), with the exception of some of the qualifying games, as well as the final, which is traditionally played on a Saturday.
Know the most popular betting markets
So now you know that there are an incredible number of matches to bet on, and these opportunities exist long before the group stages begin in September. But every match then offers up an incredible array of options. Usually, the bigger the match, the more options available, and the best sports betting sites offer the most options.
For a typical Champions League game there can be up to several hundred markets, starting with the 1×2 or ‘to win’ market, where you bet on the winner of the match, to options including the number of corners, yellow cards, whether there will be an own goal or penalty, and much much more besides.
You can place bets on individual players (to score a goal or be sent off, for example), and the best sports betting sites also offer up special bets including whether a player will score a hattrick, for example, and even ‘head-to-head’ bets where you can bet on who will score more goals between two rival players.
And now, nearly all sports betting sites offer live markets, meaning you can still bet on the match even after it has started. The best sites might offer fast markets too, which include bets such as a goal to be scored in the next ten minutes, for example. You can truly interact with the match that you are watching in front of you.
Add in bet builders, where you can select multiple bets on the same match (such as a player to score, a player to be sent off, and a team to win, for example). And then you can build accumulators, which means you can make bets on a number of different matches to increase the odds.
The options are almost endless, and the odds can vary greatly depending on what you choose to bet on. And don’t forget that sports betting sites can offer different odds on the same outcome, so it’s always good to shop around and check odds comparison sites.
Know how betting apps can help your betting experience
And finally, with the majority of people now interacting online via mobile devices rather than PCs, it’s no surprise that one of the biggest revolutions in sports betting in recent years has been the rise of the sports betting app.
Apps, much like in any field, can enhance your experience if you are accessing from a mobile device, meaning more user-friendly calls to action, more suitable formatting, linked accounts, and so on. Quite simply, betting apps have made betting online a more seamless experience, so don’t be afraid to jump in. You can sign up as a bookmaker directly through the app too. So make sure you check out which are the best apps to download.