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There are only a handful of sports spread betting bookies in the UK.  But there are the major players that are financial secure and properly regulated.  When looking for a new sports spread betting account there are a few things to take into account.  Below we’ve put together a table of the top spread betting companies to get started and what welcome offers you can expect for opening a new sports spread betting account.

Compare the best Sports Spread Betting Bookies

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How does sports spread betting work?

Sports spread betting is an exciting and established way of betting on sports.  Compared to traditional fixed odds and exchange betting providers it can be fast, more profitable and much more fun.  However, it may seem daunting as a new form of betting as it is not as popular as traditional fixed odds bookies.

It works by betting a stake based on points of an outcome.  We have a guide to how sports spread betting works but here is an example of how it works if betting on goals in a Chelsea versus Arsenal football match.

If you think it will be a high scoring match and that more that three goals will be scored and the booking is quoting 1 to 2 (they think that between 1 and 2 goals will be scored) you would buy goals at 2 at a certain amount per point.

If you bet £10 per point the most you can lose is £20 (2X£10), but if five goals are scored you make £30 (5-2 x £10).

You can bet on credit

unlike traditional sports betting spread betting bookies are prepared to offer their customers credit.  This is in part due to the fact that most spread betting bookies have a good and personal relationship with their customers but also because the outcomes are so variable.  In many ways it is like trading the financial markets and it is possible to use it to hedge against fixed odds betting.

What can you bet on

You can sports spread bet on pretty much anything now a days.  Horse racing and football remain the major markets and offer some really great odds and bets that are not possible with traditional fixed odds betting.  For example, you can bet on the minute of the first corner in a football.

Lay bets and winning when you lose

As with betting exchanges it is possible to make money when teams or horses lose.  Instead of buying something like a horse to win or a team to score goals you can sell it.  This is one of the most popular forms of spread betting as punters can use it to hedge bets, but also to act as though they are a bookie themselves.  A example of this would be if you think a horse who is the bookies favourites will not win a race.  You could either lay a bet on an exchange or sell it as a sports spread bet.

In play betting

Sports spread betting is fast moving market with live odds through out races and matches.  You can enter and exit bets in play if you have a nice profit.  Alternatively you can protect yourself by closing out early if it looks like your bet is going to be a loser.  This service is generally offered online and over the phone.

Who regulates it

As sports spread betting is more like financial trading it is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).  This is because you can lose more than your initial deposits and in some cases can bet on credit.  It is important to only bet with regulated bookies and the main players like Spreadex and Sporting Index are currently the main players.

Welcome offers and free bets

When you open a new sports spread betting account there are a few good offers available.  Always make sure you check the criteria because bookies will require you to place a certain amount of bets before you can claim them.  Getting the free bet or welcome offer is pretty easy in sports spread betting and some bookies will even give you a laptop, iPad or XBOX once you have qualified.

Risks and rewards

There is no doubt that there are high risks with sports spread betting.  Equally the rewards are just as high.  If you call a bet correctly you can win big time.  But the same works with losses.  It is entirely possible to lose much more that the balance of your account if a bet goes wrong.  SO if you are new to sports spread betting make sure you start small and fully understand the implications and exposure that any bet you place.

Financial Spread Betting

This is the financial version of sports spread betting.  Some bookies offer both sports and financial spread betting and if you’ve started off betting on the financial markets you may find sports spread betting slightly easier.

How Sports Spread Betting Works


A fairly recent and novel way to bet on sports and football and once you get your head around it can be one of the most profitable.  It is based on the principle of the stock market where you buy and sell events based on an opening and closing price.  This of course means that with sports spread betting and financial spread betting brokers you can bet on a team losing and also close bets in play or even before they have started.  In sports spread betting the market ranges from 0 to 100 and close at various points in between.  As a customer you can enter the market by buying or selling at a price set by the bookie.  For example if you wanted to spread bet on the World Cup on Brazil to win Spreadex are quoting a current price of 47.5 – 50.5.

Spreadex world cup odds

The closing levels of the market for specific outcomes are:

  • 100 points for a win
  • 75 points for losing the semis
  • 50 points for losing in the quarter finals
  • 25 points for losing in the last 16
  • 0 points if they lose sooner than than.

If you think they will win and you want to bet £10 for every point you are right it works like this.  You buy at £10 per point with a price of 50.5.  If they win the market closes at 100 so you win 49.5 points (£10 x 49.5 points = £490).  If they lose in the semi finals the market closes at 75 so you win 24.5 points (£10x 24.5 = £245).  If they lose in the quarter finals the market closes at 50 so you lose 0.5 points (£10x 0.5 = £5 loss).  If they lose in the bottom 16 the market closes at 25 so you lose 25.5 points or £255.  If they get kicked out before that the market closes at 0 so you lose £505.  You can see it is a good way to hedge bets and not be an outright loser.  If Brazil are playing badly early on in the tournament the price will go down so if you still think they can win you can buy more and average down or cut your losses early.

The best thing about sports spread betting is the flexibility of being able to get out early and win big.

Of course the opposite is true if you think they don’t stand a chance of winning you can sell them at 47.5.  If they play badly to start off with and the price drops to 30 you can buy your bet back at 30 for a profit of 17.5 points (£10x 17.5 = £170) a nice early profit.  We’ve highlighted the key sports spread betting bookies and the special offers they use to entice new customers, well worth a look as they are really exciting. One thing to bear in mind is that if you call a market wrong you can lose more than your initial bet and end up owing them so be sure to bet with only what you can afford to lose.

Free Sports Spread Betting Bets


Sports spread betting is one of the most exciting ways to bet in play online and over the phone.  Once you’ve figured out how sports spread betting works, it’s more like trading the markets that taking a punt.  The amounts bet are usually larger because you can close out early and winnings are scaled based on the final outcome.  Once you have found the best sports spread betting sites, which shouldn’t be too hard because there are not that many providers you need to find the best sports spread betting welcome offers.  It also pays to have more than one account as like any relationship diversification is the key.  Open accounts with the below bookies to get their welcome offers.

Spreadex – iPad, Xbox, £200 in free bets

Spreadex are one of the original spread betting firms and the spreadex welcome offers are always great.  You can get anything from cash to electronics to iPads.  They allow you to bet on credit and really look after their customers.  You’ll need to open an account and place a few bets to get what you want.  But think of it as earning something awesome for having fun betting and you’ll soon have a shiny new toy.
Get started with Spreadex here

Sporting Index – Free £100 bet

To take advatnage of this Sporting Index welcome offer you just need to open an account, deposit some funds and place a couple of small bets.  Once done, you are elidgable for a £100 free bet. Because of the nature of sports spread betting the winning potential here is pretty good and well worth opening a new account.
Get started with Sporting Index here

Featured Spread Betting Brokers

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