Betting: Make Profits with Asian Handicaps

To betting beginners, Asian Handicaps can look like one of the scarier types of betting. Picking a team to win with a 0.25 goal handicap seems counter-intuitive – after all, how can you score a quarter of a goal - and as such Asian Handicaps might appear to be more complex than they really are.

However, if you take time to learn and have the patience to understand how these kinds of handicaps work, then it really is possible to improve your betting profits by using Asian Handicaps. We’re going to concentrate on how they work in soccer betting in this article, but the principle is the same across many other sports such as tennis, basketball and American football.

Betting Basics: Why bet on an Asian Handicap?

The Asian Handicap was created by bookmakers to do two serve two purposes.

Firstly, the Asian Handicap reduces the number of betting outcomes to two. This is useful in sports like soccer where there are often ties. Secondly, it helps to even up mismatched contests, so that odds on bets are closer to evens (2.00). This makes it more interesting for betting purposes.

One of the most important things to consider when betting on an Asian Handicap is the “line” or “spread”. This is the point where either side of the handicap is even. In a perfectly even game, the line with bookmakers will be 1.90 either side (2.00 – 10% which represents the bookie’s commission) at 0.

The more likely a team is to lose, the bigger the handicap they are given. For example, in a match where a bookie expects a team to lose by 2, they would set the line so that the underdog has +2 and the favourite is -2. Betting on the underdog would need them to lose by less than 2 to win the bet, while the favourite would need to win by more than 3 to win the bet.

Betting Basics: How do you bet on an Asian Handicap?

The simplest Asian Handicap is 0. This is the same as betting on “draw no bet” – you are betting on one team to win. If there is a tie, then the bet is a “push” and you receive your stake back. Likewise, if you are betting on a team with an Asian Handicap of +2.00, you are betting on them to not lose by three goals or more.

Half goals take the push out of the equation. For example, if you were betting on an underdog to win +0.5, then if the team won or drew the match, your bet would win. This is shown below.

  • If the favourite wins 1-0, then with the handicap added they win 1-0.5 and the bet is lost
  • If the match finishes as a 1-1 tie then with the handicap added the underdog wins 1-1.5 and the bet is won.
  • Likewise, if the match finishes as a 1-2 win to the underdog then with the handicaps added the underdog wins 1-2.5 and the bet is won.

Quarter goals give the chance of half stakes being won, returned or lost depending on the match result. These are a bit more complex it depends on the exact number as to if you win or lose half of your stake, but you can see how all Asian Handicap betting permutations work from the table below:

betting asian handicap

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Betting Basics: How do you make money from Asian Handicap betting?

Making money from Asian Handicap betting is all about “beating the spread”. This means finding the bets where the bookies have overestimated just how good the favourite is or underestimated the strength of the underdog.

You can find where the line is by looking through the various odds on offer and finding where the bets on either side of the game are about equal. This is what the bookie expects to happen. Then, you need to apply your own reasoning as to what you think the result will be.

You can do things like check past form, past history between the teams and injuries to see if there are any factors that need to be taken into account other than the relative strengths of the team on paper.

Once you have worked out what you think will happen, you can then compare this with the line – and if the betting odds look too high, then you have found value – and value is the key to long term consistent profits from betting.

Betting Basics: Conclusions

Like with all betting, placing bets on Asian Handicaps requires a little time and effort to understand the handicap itself and the line the bookmaker has set. However, with practice it’s possible to find value bets in games even where there is a heavy favourite, ensuring that you have more choice in matches you can bet on to make long term betting profits.

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