5 Betting Options for games involving National Teams
International matches are not a friendly hunting ground for bettors. Due to the infrequency of matches at this level, coaches usually have little time to work on their teams.
The varying quality of players at the national level and injuries are also reasons why forecasting international matches are difficult. A lot of games at this level are usually mismatches. With that in mind and a focus on being fit for their clubs, players sometimes give less than 100%.
Some smart punters usually avoid betting on international matches completely. The usual favourites; Over 1.5 goals, Both Teams to Score (BTTS), Over 7.5 Corners are not assured. Some punters try to play it safe by going for options like Under 4.5 Goals, Highest Scoring Half and To Win Either Half.
There are so many games to look forward to over the next month: UEFA Nations League, AFCON, COPA America, Euro qualifiers, international friendlies and more. However, due to its peculiarities, international matches also have certain options that may fetch punters good returns.
5 of the best bet options for international matches are:
England are a team capable of delivering two or more goals in international matches
#1 Over 1.5, 2nd Half
Given the short amount of time teams spend preparing, injuries, travel and other things, international matches are usually a slow burner.
These games take a while to get going with the first half mainly spent feeling each other out. This is most common when it is a game between relative equals e.g. a Brazil versus Argentina match.
The second halves of international matches are usually more open with more attempts leading to more goals in this period. Depending on the strength of both teams, an Over 1.5 Goals in the 2nd Half is usually a good bet.
This is good advice for competitive international matches like AFCON & Copa America. However, for friendlies, it becomes riskier. This is due to the multiple substitutions coaches normally make in the second halves of friendly games.
#2 Double Chance and Goals
A team like Brazil can deliver good returns for the Double Chance and Goals option in international matches
This is one that is particularly popular with savvy punters. Given that international matches are very unpredictable, a double chance bet is usually a go-to option for safety-first betting.
However, the added advantage of being able to predict the number of goals that may/may not be scored has made this option extremely popular.
Looking at the respective strengths of the teams, a smart punter may be able to guess the number of goals that may be scored. With that done, the choice of which team is least likely to lose spices up the bet.
For example, the Seleção are averaging 2 goals per game. Given the quality of the attack of the team going to COPA America, an DC & Over 1.5 bet seems very safe.
#3 Three (3) Way Handicap Bets
This is not a new bet option. However, it is not one that is very common among bettors, especially for international matches. A 3-Way handicap simply means that based on form, certain goalscoring obstacles are placed on both teams.
Usually, both teams irrespective of form get handicaps ranging from -3 to +4 or just 4. The – sign means that a team starts the game with a chosen number of goals already against it. While a handicap like +1 or just 1 means a team starts a game with a goal advantage.
The stronger team is usually given low odds for minus handicaps as it is believed that over the course of 90 minutes, these barriers will be met and exceeded.
A good example is the AFCON tie between Nigeria and Burundi. Given the attacking strength of the Super Eagles, starting them with a -1 handicap seems like a safe enough bet.
#4 Multi-Goals (Fulltime)
This is a straightforward bet that most punters will already be aware of. Multi-Goals (Fulltime) is a bet option giving punters the chance to choose the margin of goals that might occur. The goal margins range from 1-2 goals to 7+ goals. Punters can also choose the opposite side; other than 1-2 goals all the way to other than +6 goals.
What this means is that if a punter chooses the 1-3 goals full-time option, he/she wins if any of the following outcomes occur; 1-0, 2-1, 3-0, 1-1. Anything beyond this like 3-1 makes the best a losing one.
For international matches featuring strong teams versus so-called “minnows” (see the Euro qualifiers), options like 3-6 goals are usually preferred. They offer bigger odds and are easily achievable. In matches between more even teams, the safe option would be a 1-5 goals option. However, options like these carry very low odds.
#5 1st Goal Period
For the punter willing to take big risks for big rewards, this option usually offers some very enticing odds.
Very early goals in international matches are a very rare occurrence. Goals rarely occur in the first 3-9 minutes. This means anything beyond the 10th minute is usually fair game.
1st goal periods are usually divided by ten-minute intervals. Therefore, a punter usually can choose from 1st -10th minute up till the 80th – 90th minute. Any injury-time after the 90th minute is usually counted as the 90th minute (excluding extra time).
For competitive international games like Copa America, it might be tricky to guess the time when the first goal might be scored. However, it is less difficult to do this for international friendlies. This is because friendly games are a chance to hone tactics/test new options. Therefore, coaches, most times start with their best XI before making multiple changes in the second half.
Friendlies offer a better chance of delivering on the 1st Goal Period option than competitive games
What this means is that anything between the 1st – the 45th minute is fair game in an international friendly.