Handball betting reaches its peak throughout the Olympics, with the sport itself continuing to grow in popularity all over Europe. In this guide, we will highlight the best bookmakers that offer handball as an option, and examine what exactly handball betting involves.
Best Handball Betting Sites
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Handball Betting – What Are the Rules?
Handball is a team sport consisting of two sides of seven players (six outfield players and a goalkeeper), and the aim of the game is to throw the ball into the opposing side’s net. A competitive match is played on an indoor court that is 40m long, and 20m wide. The sidelines tend to be longer, while the goal lines are much shorter. The only player allowed in the penalty area is the goalkeeper. Games are formed of two 30-minute halves, with a 10-minute break at half-time.
As a handball punter, you will come across similar markets usually found on the best betting sites for football, such as Match Winner, Total Goals Over/Under as well as in-play categories, which we discuss in more detail later in this guide.
While betting on handball attracts more interest during the Olympics, the sport's influence has permeated throughout Europe. Indeed, you will find divisions such as the German Bundesliga, the Lidl Starligue, and the Liga ASOBAL; however, the powerhouses of these respective leagues don’t emanate from major cities.
In order to establish the best teams, the European Handball Federation (EHF) has designed a coefficient ranking system. The strength of a federation member is carried out by weighing up their results in the EHF Champions League, EHF European League and EHF European Cup over the past three seasons (more on these tournaments below).
Popular Handball Betting Tournaments
Handball is a sport that has steadily been gaining more prominence, and this has resulted in many tournaments offering a good choice of handball betting markets. While it may be easier to find handball betting tips for some of these tournaments as opposed to others, you won't find yourself stuck for choice when it comes to betting sites.
Below are the most popular handball betting tournaments you can bet on.
Widely played throughout Europe, handball has a plethora of top domestic leagues. One of these is the Bundesliga in Germany where the campaign usually gets underway in September, and finishes in June. Some of the smaller towns have come to the fore over the past few years, including THW Kiel. The latter play their home games at the Sparkassen-Arena, which can hold over 10,000 fans.
Spain also has a big following when it comes to handball, where the Liga ASOBAL is the main domestic competition. Founded in 1990, there have been many top players that have graced Spain’s top handball division, including two-time Olympic champion Oleg Kiselyov.
Another domestic league that is held in high regard by the EHF is the K&H Férfi Kézilabda Liga (named as such due to sponsorship reasons) which is the Hungarian men’s league. Telekom Veszprém KC have been serial champions of the division, with their home ground, Veszprém Aréna, boasting a capacity of just over 5,000.
EHF Champions League
Deemed as Europe’s premier handball competition, the Champions League is one of the most prestigious handball tournaments in existence. Usually beginning in September and ending in June, the format is made up of two groups of eight teams, with the first two teams in Group A and B advancing to the quarter-finals.
Unlike the football version of the Champions League, the teams finishing third down to sixth take part in a playoff, while the bottom two teams drop out of the competition after the group stage.
After the quarter-finals, there is the EHF Final 4 which is typically played over one weekend. Both semi-finals are held on a Saturday, while the third/fourth-place playoff and final take place on Sunday.
Considered to be the second-tier continental competition for European clubs, the EHF Cup – which is now known as the European Handball League – bears similar hallmarks to the Europa League, and usually runs from August until May. The EHF Cup underwent a revamp in 2020, during which the number of teams taking part expanded.
Featuring 16 teams, the top four teams from each will qualify for the quarter-finals, with teams finishing seventh and eighth respectively eliminated from the tournament.
The four teams that finish from 3rd to 6th in their groups will advance to a playoff round, before progressing to the quarter-finals, and then the Final Four.
Handball World Championships
Usually taking place every couple of years, the Handball World Championships is the premier international competition for both men and women’s handball. A different country takes it in turn to the host each edition of the tournament, with France holding a rich pedigree in the competition.
The top two teams from each group progresses to the semi-finals, while the other teams that have been eliminated duke it out to determine their final rankings.
Handball at the Olympics
Handball has been a constant presence at the Olympics for men since 1972, and women since 1976. For the men, there are 12 teams that are involved, while there are 15 teams that participate in the women’s competition. The tournament consists of a group stage before moving into knockout format at the quarter-final stage.
What Are the Most Popular Handball Betting Markets?
Handball betting comes in many various forms, and as mentioned, many of these mirror a number of the most popular football betting markets. Let’s take a look at some of the best handball betting markets out there.
Also known as ‘Moneyline’, this is a very simple and straightforward market. This requires selecting whether the Home side or Away side will emerge victorious, or whether the game will finish as a draw.
Best handball betting site for Match Winner: Paddy Power
Similar to the final result bet, Double Chance allows punters to select two of the three possible outcomes. While the odds are smaller, it remains a popular choice for handball bettors.
Best handball betting site for Double Chance: Betfair
Although the nature of this market is more challenging, the Correct Score market (which as the name implies, involves predicting the exact score at the end of a match) also sees the odds vastly increase, as games can be high-scoring affairs.
Best handball betting site for Correct Score: William Hill
Another intriguing market yet potentially very rewarding market, this involves you betting on both the result at half-time and then at full-time. If one side is on top in both halves, this bet can end up being highly lucrative if successful.
Best handball betting site for Half-Time/Full-Time: Ladbrokes
Win to Nil
This market entails predicting if a side will win without conceding. This kind of bet can appeal to those who can spot trends or patterns in games. However, if your chosen teams wins but concedes, you will lose your bet.
Best handball betting site for Win to Nil: BetVictor
Handball Betting Promotions
The best handball betting sites will provide an array of promotions that will appeal to new and existing players. See below for some of the promotions that you could come across.
Accumulator Betting Promotions
Also known as accas or multis, accumulator offers are a staple of established betting sites. They will usually come in the form of an added percentage of the total winnings. The purpose of these types of bets are to boost your returns, and this will be clearly signposted on the site, such as ‘Click here to boost your Acca’. Always read the T&Cs before proceeding.
Usually referred to as enhanced odds, some handball betting sites raise prices in order to provide the highest payouts. These kinds of promotions are usually above-average odds that can lean towards the favourite or underdogs. They can be quite lucrative for punters.
Free bets generally encompass a wide range of promotions and bonuses, as they include sign-up offers or money back betting offers. They will be used to entice new customers upon registering for a site.
Handball Betting Strategy
As with other team sports, mastering handball betting requires a combination of luck and skill. Here are some useful suggestions that may improve your chances of success in the long term.
1. Shop Around for the Best Bookmaker
The devil is in the details, so it is vital you do your homework when searching for the best handball odds. Make sure you compare and contrast various betting sites, so you can find the one that caters to your needs.
2. Know the Game
The better you understand handball as a sport, the smarter your handball betting predictions are likely to be. Whether it is following a particular European league or keeping an eye on Champions League developments, make sure you approach each competition in a methodical way.
3. Try Out Other Markets
Another useful handball betting tip is to explore other markets. Once you feel comfortable with the ‘Match Winner’ market, then you should broaden your horizons, and test out others such as Total Over/Under Goals or the First Half sections.
Handball – A Brief History
Originally played as an outdoor sport, the modern form of handball – which combines elements of basketball and football – originated in Scandinavia. The invention of indoor handball didn’t take place until the 1940s, where it became a seven-a-side game.
Team handball continued to evolve during the post-war years, while the men’s game made its debut at the 1972 Olympics. The women’s version was added to the Olympics roster four years later, and both have remained a permanent fixture ever since. Today, there are a large number of handball teams scattered throughout Europe.
Handball Betting FAQs
Aside from European tournaments, such as the Champions League, handball betting reaches a peak when the Olympics and the World Championships are on.
The ‘Match Winner’ market is a good starting point, but other types of handball bets, such as the Total Goals Over/Under section are also popular. We outline the top handball betting markets in a relevant section above within the main article.
ThePuntersPage Final Say
While handball perhaps isn’t as mainstream as other sports, it is has been garnering more recognition and popularity over the years, and there are plenty of bookmakers out there who offer plenty of handball betting options. Simply refer to our list of bookies above and pick any one that strikes your fancy to get started!