Betting School

European handicap explained

What is the meaning of European handicap in football betting? Many have seen the EH market on their sportsbook, few understand it and even fewer include this type of bet in their betslips. The European handicap is a very interesting and rewarding – when it comes to odds – an alternative type of bet for punters who are used to betting on traditional match winner markets. This 3-way handicap is also an ideal warm up if you are planning to start betting on handicaps. It is much simpler than the asian handicap and is here to help you initiate a whole different way of wagering. Everything you need to know about European handicap in football betting will be explained in this guide. 

What is a European handicap?

UnderstandingΕuropean handicap is a type of bet not as widespread among bettors as its Asian counterpart (apart from a large number of African bettors), even though it was launched much earlier by online bookies. It was created to offer more value to the odds and thus increase the punters projected winnings. The handicap European is mainly used in matches where the favourite team is pretty clear and naturally, the odds not so enticing. England national team are hosting Bulgaria and online bookmakers predict an easy win for the Three Lions. Sadly the odds are too low to even bother betting on the hosts win. A look at the European handicaps will change your mind. England -2 will probably be offered at 2.50 at a fair price.

The only thing to consider here is the motivation. If England is already winning 2-0 at half-time then it is very possible to slow down their tempo and not push for another goal. So lesson one about what is euro handicap, always keep in mind the motivation of each team, especially the favourite one.

Contrary to common belief, the Euro handicap it is not only used in clashes with a clear favorite but even in clashes where both teams are of equal strength. For example, the odds for a possible FA Cup final between Manchester City and Liverpool should be more or less equal. So if you think that City will make it you can back them to win at let’s say 2.50 odds. But if you predict an easy victory you can consider the European handicap 3-way -1 option on odds close to 3.70. 

Bet with the highest odds on European Handicap


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How to bet using European handicap?

how toMany punters, especially those who take their first steps in betting, can’t really understand how European handicap works. It is pretty simple yet not all that worth in terms of vig though. Let’s see it with an example. In a Premier League match between Chelsea and Newcastle, your online bookmaker is offering Chelsea (-1) Draw ( -1), Newcastle (+1). If the match ends 2-0 and you have backed the home win, you are a winner. If you have picked the draw option you win if Chelsea wins with exactly one goal difference(1-0, 2-1 etc). Finally, if you backed the away team then you win if the match will end in a tie or Newcastle wins. 

As you can see it is rather easy to understand and bet on European Handicap. The most important question is if it is worth it. Generally, it is not as in most cases the margin is simply not high enough, and can even make it unprofitable in the long term. This is probably the reason most punters turn their back in this type of bet and prefer Asian handicap betting.

What types of Euro handicap can I bet on?

If you want to use euro handicap in football betting, then final or half-time match results, goals, cards and corners options are all offered by nearly every bookmaker. You can also bet on tennis, volleyball, handball, ice-hockey and sometimes even baseball and American football. Generally speaking, the most well-known bookmakers have the European handicap in their sportsbook for every sport they cover.

Euro handicap examples – European handicap 3-way 1

In the match we analyzed above – England vs Bulgaria – let’s see what happens through some other examples. Let’s say you have chosen European handicap 3-0 and the final result is 3-0. Are you a winner? No, unfortunately, you are not. You would have won if you had picked the draw option. If England wins 3-1 then the European handicap 0-3, (or Bulgaria +3) is the winning option. In case you had backed England’s win you will win if the Lions should beat Bulgaria with a goal difference higher than three goals such as 4-0, 5-1 etc. 

European handicap vs Asian handicap: Which is best?

odds vs accaNow that we’ve seen what a European handicap is and glanced at some euro handicap examples, let’s go to the ultimate test. Which of the two handicaps is the best and why? As you have probably already guessed we are a bit biased towards the AH but this doesn’t mean that EH is fundamentally worse. We will give you an example to let you decide which of the two handicaps you should include in your game. 

The match is Liverpool – Chelsea at Anfield. The pre-game odds are 2.10 – 3.10 – 3.80. 

First let’s see the handicap comparison. Liverpool to win with European handicap -1 is the same market as Asian handicap -1.5. A bet on draw (-1) has no equivalent in Asian handicap (it is a two-way type of bet) and Chelsea to win with handicap +1 equals Asian handicap +0.5. 

And now we will compare the odds. 

  • European Handicap Liverpool -1 4.33 and the Asian is 4.40
  • European Handicap draw (+1) 3.50
  • European Handicap Chelsea +1 1.75 and the Asian is 1.725

Betting is all about winning money. You can win bigger if you can have the better odds. So now that you know the choice is yours and only yours.

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