Betting on Draws Strategy – How To Bet on Football Draws & Win!

Betting on draws in football is an often-overlooked betting strategy. Most fans expect their team to win and the other to lose, which influences their bet choices too. In this article, we list the betting sites for betting on football draws, the probability of them happening, how to predict them and more.

Love all things football? Don't miss out on our detailed guide to the 20 best UK football betting sites!

Best Betting Sites We Recommend for Draws

#1
William Hill
  • £30 free bet bankroll booster
  • Highly competitive odds
  • Create your own bets for the highest value! #YourOdds
T&Cs APPLY, 18+ ONLY

18+. Play Safe. New customers using Promo code H30 only, Min £10/€10 stake, min odds 1/2, free bets paid as 2 x £15/€15, free bets credited after settlement of first qualifying bet, free bets will expire 30 days after the qualifying bet is placed, payment method/player/country restrictions apply. #ad

#2
Betfair
  • Get £20 Free Exchange Bet and £20 Free Sportsbook Bet
  • Top quality odds
  • Create your own bets at the Exchange = Huge value potential!
T&Cs APPLY, 18+ ONLY

New customer offer. Place 5 x £10or more bets to receive £20in free bets. Repeat up to 5 times to receive maximum £100bonus. Min odds 1/2 (1.5). Exchange bets excluded. Payment restrictions apply. T&Cs apply. #ad

#3
Paddy Power
  • One of the most popular bookmakers
  • The highest odds for the best value bets
  • Get 3 x £10 In Risk Free Bets + 100 Free Spins!
T&Cs APPLY, 18+ ONLY

New customers only. Place your FIRST bet on any sportsbook market and if it loses we will refund your stake in CASH. Max refund for this offer is £20. Only deposits made using Cards or Apple Pay will qualify for this promotion. T&Cs apply. Paddy's Rewards Club: Get a £10 free bet when you place 5x bets of £10+. T&Cs apply. #ad

#4
bet365
  • World renowned betting site
  • Widest range of betting markets
  • Up to £100 in bet credits
T&Cs APPLY, 18+ ONLY

Up to £100 in Bet Credits for new customers at bet365. Min deposit £5. Bet Credits available for use upon settlement of bets to value of qualifying deposit. Min odds, bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. Time limits and T&Cs apply. #ad

#5
MansionBet
MansionBet
  • Lucrative betting offers
  • Competitive football odds
  • Brilliantly designed site
T&Cs APPLY, 18+ ONLY

New customers only, min deposit and bet £10 (£20 if E/W bet) from UK Debit card only. Paypal not accepted. Min odds evens (1/5 per multi selection). 4x £5 Free Bets valid for 7 days, stake not returned, no cash out. T&Cs apply. #ad

 

How to Bet on Draws – Finding Value

Most people, especially football fans, tend to bet by following their gut instinct or backing the team they hope will win. Arsenal fans will bet on an Arsenal win, for example, while Manchester United fans will consistently back a victory for their team. That means that a bookmaker's liability (what operators have to pay out to punters) are usually stacked on either team to win.

If nobody is backing a particular outcome, bookies will boost the odds on it, while lowering the odds on other outcomes (win or loss in this case). This means they will have to pay less in case of the other outcomes being successful. A draw may have real odds of around 9/4; however, the lack of bets can push the odds up to 5/2 or even close to 3/1.

Separating odds sets

When looking at various sets of odds, this becomes very clear. Let us look at two examples of 1X2 outcomes. The first has a strong home favourite, with odds of 13/20 (home team to win), 23/10 (draw) and 19/4 (away team to win) while the second has more balanced odds at 8/5, | 23/10 | 9/5. If you have been paying attention, you will see that despite the odds being different, a draw is equally likely. In the first set, the draw is the second most likely outcome, while in the second it is the most likely outcome.

As you can see, a draw can be just as likely when there is a heavy favourite to win as when both teams are evenly matched. This is often caused by heavy betting on the favourite, which can skew odds.

This further demonstrates the value in draw betting.

 

The Probability of Draws in Football

Of course, football teams are not incentivised to settle for a draw. All professional leagues award three points for a win and just one for a draw. However, this does not stop draws from being frequent. How likely a draw is, differs greatly between leagues. While draws are more common in lower leagues, they are less frequent in higher leagues. This can be seen clearly in the percentages of draws between the EPL and League 1, Serie A and Serie B, and Bundesliga and Bundesliga 2, shown in the table below. Just in case you are wondering, the league with the most draws in 2019 – 2020 was the Uruguay Primera, with a whopping draw percentage of 54.17%!

Tournament2019 - 20202018 - 2019 2017 - 2018
EPL24.20%18.70%26.10%
League 128.10%26.60%27.10%
Champions League24.40%27.40%21.90%
Serie A23.20%28.40%21.90%
Serie B27.30%32.50%35%
Greece Super League29.20%23.30%30.30%
Bundesliga23%24.40%26.90%
Bundesliga 231.80%28.60%29.30%
Data sourced from Sport12x.com

How to Predict Draws – A Mathematical Approach

While knowing how often draws occur in a specific league is very relevant, it does not tell us how likely a draw will be in a specific matchup. In order to calculate their odds, bookies use mathematical models to predict the likelihood of any possible outcome. That includes draws, wins, losses, and specific scores. Two of the most common models are Poisson distribution and Normal Distribution.

Predicting Draws with Poisson Distribution

Poisson distribution is a method that uses probability theory to predict how likely an event is. You can use it to calculate the likelihood of a specific score in football. To do this, you need to first calculate your league’s average goal expectancy, as well as the attack strength, and defence strength for both sides. After calculating how likely every specific score is, you can add up the probabilities of all drawing scores (0 – 0, 1 – 1, 2 – 2, 3 – 3, 4 – 4, etc.).

Read our full article on Poisson distribution and learn how to create your own Poisson football spreadsheet with Excel (as shown below). 

Predicting Draws

Normal Distribution

Normal distribution is a statistical model based on averages as well as how often they occur. Two teams may have the same average score, however, one team can be very consistent, while one team overperforms and underperforms frequently. By calculating the standard deviation, you can see how often, and by how much results differ from the mean. This will possibly give you a more nuanced result.

Other Mathematical Factors

If you are looking to bet on draws, look at how likely a draw is in a specific league. Draws have plenty of correlations. Low-scoring leagues have more draws than higher scoring leagues. The fewer the goals, the more likely a draw.

Another rule of thumb is to look for teams approximately equal in strength. One way is to use Elo ratings. If one team is weaker, it can make up for it with a home field advantage.

Soft Factors

Besides a more mathematical approach, there are plenty of soft factors that can increase or decrease the probability of a draw. While these are highly influential, they are not as easy to quantify, and are often ignored by bookies.

Playing Style

While certain factors, such as attack/defence ratio, attack strength, goals scored, goals conceded, etc. are easily quantified, the exact style matchups between different teams are hard to express in numbers. Strategic scenarios are the stuff of managers. Still, it can’t hurt to come up with your own likely scenarios for how a match will play out.

Motivation Factor

Another important factor is motivation. This depends a lot on where in the season the tournament is, and is particularly relevant at the end. Teams that desperately need a win for a championship or to prevent themselves from being relegated are more motivated than teams in the middle of the pack. Teams with nothing to win or lose may be more content with a draw.

Weaker teams may also be more content with a draw when playing stronger teams. Instead of chasing the victory, they may be content to simply defend and shut down the team with better accolades.

 

Draw Betting Systems Ranked

There are various draw betting systems, some we recommend, such as backing the draw, and the 2 out of 5 system. However, others such as the chasing a draw are inherently more risky. We have ranked them from best to worst.

1. Backing the Draw System

The backing the draw system is the main strategy for draw betting. The idea behind it is very simple. Since punters and football fans are more likely to bet on teams to win, less money comes in on draws. This means that the bookies inflate odds on draws. While the real odds on a draw are closer to 2/1 (or even lower) the lack of bets pushed the odds up to near 3/1. If you bet on three draws with odds near 3/1 and only win one of them, you will still be in profit.

Several tipsters make a living selling draw tips based on this system. Every week, they usually choose three or more matches for draw picks, while boasting a considerable ROI. Of course, there is no reason you cannot figure it out for yourself.

2. 2 out of 5 System

The 2 out of 5 system is essentially a strategy that involves accumulators or a system bet. Here, you chose five matches that are likely to draw. Instead of betting directly on those five matches, you place a system bet, betting on all the doubles (the outcome of each individual match parlayed with each of the other matches). As the name suggests, you will only need two out of every five matches correct in order to make a profit. This usually works if the odds are on average over 23/10 (which is common for draws) or higher for your selections.

3. Betting on Draw/Odd Total

This is essentially a form of Dutching or arbitrage betting. On one hand, you bet on a draw, on the other, you bet on an odd (instead of even) score. Since a draw is always an even score, you can be sure that you will win. Whether this strategy works depends on the odds, of course. Most bookies’ odds are set in a way to prevent this from happening. Nevertheless, you can sometimes find opportunities by shopping between different bookies.

4. Chasing a Draw (Martingale with draw)

Chasing a draw is a less sophisticated method of draw betting. It is a variation of the Martingale betting strategy, which advises that you keep doubling your bets until you are in the black. Here, you keep betting on the same team to draw and keep doubling your bets to make up for any losses. On the surface, this makes sense; every team will draw eventually. Thus, it is just a matter of time before you actually make money. However, the system has limitations. Your bankroll is not infinite, and if a team has a long enough streak without a draw, you will have no funds left.

If you want to try this risky strategy, we recommend starting with very low stakes, since your bet size will increase exponentially on a loss streak.

 

Betting on Draws FAQs

⚒️  How do you bet on draws?

There are various strategies for draw betting. These include straight betting, the 2 out of 5 system, chasing and backing the draw.

🥇 How do you predict football draws?

Bookies use models and mathematical formulas such as Poisson distribution and normal distribution to predict football outcomes and draws. Draws are likely when teams are evenly matched.

⚒️  Which league draws the most often?

In general, the lower the league, the more draws you see. For example, Bundesliga had 23% draws in 2019 – 2020, while Bundesliga 2 had 31.80% draws in the same year. For the same year, the EPL saw 24.20% draws, while League 1 saw 28.10%. The league with the most draws in 2019 – 2020 was the Uruguay Primera, with a whopping draw percentage of 54.17%!

🤑  What percentage of football matches are draws?

The odds of a draw depend on the league. Here are a few examples from 2019 – 2020: EPL: 24.20%, League 1: 28.10%, Champions League: 24.40%, Serie A: 23.20%, and Bundesliga: 23%.

⚽️  How often do football games end in 0 - 0?

0 – 0 is often the most unpopular score for football fans. In the top five European leagues, there is usually one 0 – 0 result for every 12 to 13 games played. That gives a percentage of around 8% of games ending in 0 – 0.

 

ThePuntersPage Final Say

Betting on draws can be a smart betting strategy, but the unpopularity of draws with football fans means they are unlikely to bet on them. Nevertheless, this means you can find plenty of value since this can boost the bookies' odds on their outcome. There are several valid draw betting strategies, which can work. Look out for value bets and make your own predictions and calculations.