What does under 3 and under 3.5 goals mean when betting soccer?

What does under 3 and under 3.5 goals mean when betting soccer?

While many people like to bet on specific teams to win games, in any sport, you can also become a very profitable bettor wagering on the totals of games. 

Much like other American sports, soccer betting has an over/under for each contest played. That would be the total goals scored by both teams combined in a particular match.

Of course, in Major League Baseball, the National Football League and NCAA College Football, and the National Basketball Association and NCAA College Basketball, the over/under total lines are set much higher than in a soccer match, because of the limited goals scored in soccer.

Most soccer league games have an over/under line placed somewhere between 2-3 goals, with a popular number of 2.5 for many contests.

But in some leagues where the goal-scoring is slightly higher, such as the German Bundesliga or the Netherlands Eredivisie (for examples), or if a team is very prolific in front of the net, like Manchester City of the English Premier League or Bayern Munich of the Bundesliga, the over/under total line can be adjusted upwards to 3 or 3.5  

A prime example of a soccer over/under total line came from a match in the English Premier League this March, when Manchester City hosted Southampton at the Etihad.

Manchester City had been scoring a lot of goals in the league, while Southampton had been beaten 9-0 earlier in the season by Manchester United, the Saints' second 9-0 loss in two seasons.

So the over goal line for the contest was set at 3.5 goals at odds of -125. The under 3.5 goals were set at +110, anticipating that the visiting Cityzens would pile in the goals.

The oddsmakers clearly thought that the match would have at least four goals, since you had to bet $125 to win $100 back (total of $225 returned) on the over total. If you thought the game would be low scoring, you could bet $100 to win back $110 (total of $210 returned)

And they were correct: the over hit in the first half, as City took a 3-1 lead on the way to a 5-2 victory. If you backed the over 3.5 goals, you had your money secured at the break.

But as I said, the over 3 or 3.5 goal totals are not always a wise play. In some leagues, such as the Italian Serie A or Serie B, the totals can be down near 2 to start the games or even 2.25 on the Asian handicap total

So where do you place these bets online?

Any sportsbook in America will have the over/under totals on a soccer match. You can go to BetMGM, William Hill, FanDuel, DraftKings, BetAmerica, Golden Nugget Sportsbook, SugarHouse, Caesars, bet365, Unibet, Hard Rock, PointsBet, and Resorts. All have online and mobile capability.

Every month, there are more online apps launching as well, plus more states joining the sports betting fray. By the time 2021 ends, there could be six or seven more states, and over half of American states, that have some form of legalized online sports betting

About Sean Miller
Sean Miller author profile

Sean has been covering sports for the Trenton Times and NJ.com since 2013 and has been writing about sports betting since 2017. He was the beat writer for the Premier League for six years and for the TrentonThunder, the Double-A affiliate of the New York Yankees, now going on his seventh season. Sean also covers local sports (baseball, basketball, football, golf, ice hockey, volleyball, and wrestling) for the Times. He has a UEFA B license (so he knows a little bit about soccer) and is a big fan of the Red team in Manchester.

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