Goal Betting Markets: Over 2.5 Goals Meaning Explained
Some of the most popular football bets offered by betting sites are goals markets. There are many types of total goals and goalscorer markets, but not everyone knows how these bets work, or indeed how they should approach them.
What does over 2.5 goals mean? What is alternative total goals? Do own goals count in betting? These questions and more are answered in the following strategy guide.
What Does Over 2.5 Goals Mean?
When a football betting site sets 2.5 as the total goals line for a match, you’ll get an option to bet either over or under this amount.
With this type of bet, you are asked to predict whether there will be more or less than 2.5 total goals in the game.
It doesn’t matter which team scores the goals, as long as you have predicted the total goals correctly. If there are three goals and you've bet on over 2.5, you'll win your bet. However, if it's a one-goal or two-goal game, your bet will be a loser.
The over/under line may not always be set at 2.5 as bookmakers change totals for each game, but 2.5 is the most common line.
Example: PSG v Manchester City
For example, you might fancy a high-scoring game in a Champions League clash between PSG and Manchester City, so you take the over 2.5 goals option. If the score ends 0-0, 1-1, 1-0 or 2-0, you will lose your money.
You will win your bet, however, if these two attacking sides deliver a total of three goals or more. If the final score is 2-1, 2-2, 3-2, 3-3, or 4-3, your bet will be a winner.
You can also bet on the number of goals a particular team will score with the team total goals market, so you could ignore the game's total goals and simply bet on Man City to score more than 2.5 goals.
Another variation of this type of bet is the over/under per half. For example, you could bet on under 1.5 in the second half of PSG v Man City. If the game ended 3-2, but only one of the goals was scored in the second half, you would win your bet.
Alternative Total Goals Betting
Bookmakers and betting apps will usually offer alternative total goals markets alongside the main over/under line.
If the over/under line is set at 2.5 goals, 1.5 and 3.5 goals might be offered as alternative total goals markets.
When betting on the Premier League, for example, you might see an over/under 2.5 goals option for Man United v Liverpool, but you happen to fancy a goal blitz.
In this case, seek out the alternative total goals market and bet on over 3.5 goals, where you can avail of better odds.
Goalscorer betting asks you to predict if a specific player will score. First goalscorer is the most popular type of goalscorer bet, where you try to correctly pick which player will score the first goal of the game.
There are also markets for anytime goalscorer and last goalscorer and many betting sites offer each-way goalscorer markets.
With each-way goalscorer betting, if you back a player to score first or last each-way, you still win at a fraction of the odds (usually 1/3 of the odds) if they score anytime.
Do Own Goals Count in Betting? - First Goalscorer Own Goal Rules
An own goal generally doesn't count for settling goalscorer bets and that's good news for punters. If you've backed a player to score first and the first goal is an own goal, your bet is still alive.
For example, let's say you back Harry Kane to score first for Tottenham against Arsenal and the first goal of the game is an own goal from Matt Doherty. If Kane scores the second goal, you still win your bet because the own goal doesn't count towards the first goalscorer market.
Some online bookies also allow you to bet on an own goal being scored in a match or on a specific player to score an OG - usually at very long odds.
For most other markets, such as total goals or both teams to score, own goals count the same as normal goals.
Read More: What Does BTTS Mean in Betting?
Do Penalty Shootout Goals Count Towards Golden Boot?
No, penalty shootout goals do not count towards a player's tally in a tournament and do not count towards the Golden Boot award.
Time of First Goal Betting
The time of first goal betting market allows you to bet on when you think the first goal will be scored in a football match regardless of the player, team, or final score.
Bookmakers usually divide games into 10-minute or 15-minute time slots for this market, each with different odds. You then need to choose the period when you believe the first goal will be scored. Bettors can also bet that there won’t be a goal in a specific time period.
Between the 2016/17 and 2021/22 Premier League seasons, more goals have been scored in the first 15-minute time slot than any other, with the 75-90-minute time period being the least common.
The time of first goal market is usually available in-play, so you can place a bet if you're watching a game and feel that a goal is coming soon.
Read More: Follow The Best Football Betting Strategy
Clean Sheet Betting
With clean sheet betting, you’re backing a team not to concede any goals. It doesn’t matter how many your team scores, as long as they don’t concede at the other end.
Clean sheet betting is tricky because teams with sizable leads often make substitutions and take their foot off the gas late in games - making them more likely to concede.
Likewise, a team with a tight lead is constantly threatened because the opposition desperately wants to score and get back into the game.
Where to Bet on Football Goals Markets
The licensed sites listed below specialise in football betting and provide welcome bonuses with football free bets when you sign up.
To bet on any of the markets discussed above, just visit one of these football bookies.
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