Any way you slice it, the 2018 FIFA World Cup will go down in history as one of the most important sporting events ever held. And betting on the World Cup is expected to reach new heights. To get you ready for the action, here’s a quick refresher and guide on all your different World Cup betting options for this year’s tournament in Russia.



It’s just like the other football: The favored team in a match has to win by a certain margin for your bet to cash in, while the underdog can lose straight-up and still pay out – provided they don’t lose by more than the same margin. The final score at the end of 90 minutes, plus stoppage time, is the score used to determine which bets are the winners.

Let’s imagine Brazil are facing a team from New Zealand, with the following spread:

Brazil –1 (–130)
New Zealand +1 (+110)

The Canaries are the favorites here; for every $130 you wager, you’ll be paid $100 if Brazil beats the spread (smaller and larger bets are allowed). The underdogs from New Zealand will pay out $110 for every $100 wagered if they don’t lose by more than one goal. A one-goal victory by Brazil would result in a push – all monies returned.



The moneyline also works in much the same way as in other sports, except you can bet on the draw as well as either of the two teams involved (also known as “1X2” betting). Here’s how it might look for our faux matchup:

Brazil –230
New Zealand +800
Draw +330



Instead of betting on the winner of a match, you can bet on how many goals will be scored during 90 minutes plus stoppage – specifically, whether the combined score will go over or under the posted total:

Brazil 2.5 (–150)o
New Zealand 2.5 (+125)u

The total for this match is 2.5 goals, and the lowercase “o” represents the over, which is favored in this case.



A futures bet is just what it says: a bet on an event that will be resolved sometime down the road – like who will win the World Cup. Brazil were +400 favorites heading into this year’s tournament; if the Kiwis had qualified, they might be +100000 long shots.



You can bet on the outcome (or lack thereof) for a number of in-game or in-tournament events, like who will score the most goals for Brazil, or during which stage of the tournament the Kiwis will be eliminated.



Instead of placing a series of single bets, you can combine them in a World Cup parlay and get paid exponentially more – as long as all your picks come true. The more matches you parlay (up to a maximum of 12), the higher the payouts climb, along with the degree of difficulty.


Live Betting

Betting on the World Cup gets even more exciting when you place your bets live, while the match is in progress. Check out the Live Betting page at Bovada Sportsbook to see which matches are underway and what lines are available, then get ready to pounce like Ronaldo when you see a bet you like. Ni pukha, ni pyera!


*Odds as of June 13, 2018