Speculate to Accumulate: A quick guide to football accumulators

It’s often said that accumulators are best left well alone and there’s a good reason for that. The obvious problem is the fact that it’s hard enough to get one of your picks right so adding extra events will only make it harder to get a result.

A lot of professional gamblers wouldn’t even consider placing an accumulator but their world is a little different to that of the everyday punter.

A professional will have a decent stake to play with and sees big losses as a necessary risk, whereas your typical sports bettor won’t have that kind of stake or want to take that kind of risk. Which is where the accumulator comes in. Pick well and you can win some serious money from a small punt.

What is an accumulator?

An accumulator is a bet that includes more than one outcome, for instance betting on four teams to win in one bet. The difference between betting a fiver on each match individually and betting twenty quid on the four teams in an accumulator is the fact that when your bet is an accumulator if one of the four teams loses and even if the other three win, you still lose. That said, if all four teams in your accumulator win, your winnings will far outweigh what you would have won if you were betting individually.

Can you go too far?

I believe so, for every big winner like the guy who won half a million with 30p there are countless punters going home empty handed, it’s why the bookies still take these bets. So what’s the limit? I think betting on four teams is the upper limit. You can push it a little bit, it’s not unheard of for six team accumulators to pay off but after that the odds start to spiral into an unrealistic territory.

How do you work out the odds on an accumulator?

That’s the important question. Luckily it’s pretty easy to answer if you have the percentage odds of each individual event. Simply multiplying the percentage odds of each event together will give you the probability. For example if you are betting on two teams to win and both teams have a 50% chance of success you multiply 0.5 by 0.5 to get the overall odds of 0.25 or 25%.