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    What Does Spread Betting Mean?

    A spread bet is a type of wager on the outcome of an event, where the pay-off is based on the accuracy of the wager, rather than a simple “win or lose” outcome. In sports betting, a spread bet is used to level the playing field between two mismatched teams by setting a margin of points that the favorite must win by. 

    Definition of a Spread Bet

    A spread bet involves betting on whether a specified outcome will be above or below a spread. The spread, also known as the line, is set by the bookmaker.

    Reading the Spread:

    The spread will have two sides: the favorite and the underdog. The favorite is expected to win by more than the spread, while the underdog is expected to lose by less than the spread.


    For instance, if the spread for a football game is set at -3.5 for the favorite and +3.5 for the underdog, the favorite must win by 4 or more points for bets on them to pay off, while the underdog must either win outright or lose by 3 or fewer points for bets on them to pay off.

    Evaluating Value:

    Evaluating value in spread betting involves assessing whether you believe the spread accurately reflects the true difference in ability between the two teams or competitors.

    Pros and Cons:

    • Pros: Spread bets can offer more attractive odds than Moneyline bets, especially when the teams are unevenly matched.
    • Cons: They can be more complex for beginners to understand, and predicting the margin of victory can be more challenging than simply predicting the winner.


    Successful spread betting requires a good understanding of the game, the teams, and other influencing factors like injuries, weather conditions, and home/away advantages.

    Spread betting adds an extra level of excitement and challenge as it requires bettors to not only predict who will win, but by how much they will win. It’s a popular choice among sports bettors as it often makes betting on events with uneven competitors more interesting.