European vs Asian Handicap

What is meant by Handicap?

Handicap betting is a way to make a match more even, which also makes it more interesting to bet from an odds perspective. In betting this is done by the game companies giving the weaker team an edge as it theoretically has a worse starting position to win the match, while the favorite of the match has a handicap they must overcome.
The explanation of the game form is quite simple. One team starts the match with tex. 0.5, 1 or 2 more goals.

An example:

  • Åtvidaverg +2. Underdog and gets two goals lead.
  • AIK -2. Favorite to win and thus get a minus handicap
European handicap

In this example, you can say that the match starts with 2-0 to Åtvidaberg’s favor. If AIK wins the match with 0-1, it is then registered with the gaming companies as a win for Åtvidaberg 2-1.

European Handicap (EH)

European Handicap is a game variant commonly referred to as “handicap betting” or “3-way handicap”.

In such a bet, one / more goals (always integers) are deducted from the favorite or one / more goals are added to the underdog. You should tip which team wins the match with the team (s) negative (-) / positive (+) handicap included.

If you choose to bet on the favorite, that team must outperform its handicap in order for you to win the game. For example, if you bet on Liverpool (-2), they must win by at least three goals margin for the handicap game to enter.

The big difference between European handicap and Asian handicap is that EH does not reduce the game to just two possible outcomes but a cross is still possible.

Draw result possible

Cross – this option is winning in the event of a first team victory with a goal difference equal to the handicap awarded.

For example:

  • Liverpool (-1)
  • Cross (-1)
  • Newcastle (+1)

The possible outcomes are as follows:

  • Liverpool beat Newcastle with more than one goal: Liverpool (-1) wins.
  • Liverpool win against Newcastle with exactly one goal: Cross (-1) wins.
  • Match ends in draw: Newcastle (+1) wins.
  • Newcastle beats Liverpool with one or more goals: Newcastle (+1) wins.
Asian handicap results

The handicap satisfies game sharks (odds are improved) who believe in a secure Liverpool win with at least two goals.

However, the handicap is meant to also minimize players’ losses in case of failed tips. How to achieve this?

This is where Asian Handicap comes into the picture. AH comes in handy as its opportunities sometimes allow the player to get back his bet or parts of it.

Asian Handicap (AH)

Asian Handicap has become increasingly popular with gaming companies such as Unibet, NordicBet and ComeOn !.

The major difference between European Handicap and Asian Handicap is that the latter only offers two betting options: Profits / losses. A draw has been removed.

If it is a draw result after calculating the handicap, then all bets are counted as ” push, void “, ie they are refunded to the player at the same amount that was bet. In some cases half the stake (split) is refunded, we will return to it.

Asian handicap can be used with decimal numbers instead of integers with the main purpose of preventing the result from ending with a cross. As we just mentioned, you can only bet if a specific team wins or loses.

Within HA, however, we distinguish between:

  • Half goals: 0.5, 1.5, 2.5…
  • Full Goals: 0, 1, 2…

What happens if you chose an integer number eg. -1.0 or -2.0 – unlike a half number and the handicap is matched with the actual result? In this case, you simply get your bet back.

Same as Draw No Bet

In a very even match, however, is the handicap. In a match between Chelsea and Arsenal, you may have a slight idea that Chelsea will win, but may not be entirely sure. By believing in Chelsea, you play +0 AH Chelsea, which gives you the assurance that you will get money back in the draw and win in the Chelsea win. This is a way to minimize any losses on the gaming account.

Split games

You may have seen AH where it looks like this: 0, -0.5. It’s a two-bit comma. It may look complicated, but it is not. With this type of AH game, your bet is split into two parts on the two handicaps listed.

If you have 0, -0.5:

  • You win when the team you played on wins the game.
  • If the match ends in a draw, you get back half the bet (0) and lose half (-0.5).
  • If the team you played on loses the match, you lose the entire bet.

Let’s take an example from Bet365 and the Premier League. You choose to play at Liverpool -1.0 & -1.5 against Bournemouth:

  • You win at the odds of 2,050 instead of 1.45 as usual 1X2.
  • Half your bet is put on Liverpool with a -1.0 goals start,
  • the other half at Liverpool with a -1.5 goals start.

As always, you just add the actual result of the match to your bet. So if Liverpool crosses or loses the match, you lose the game because you failed to defeat the handicap. If Liverpool win by only one goal, you lose half your stake (half of -1.5) and you get half your stake back (half of -1.0). If Liverpool win by two goals or more, then you win the entire bet.


Asian Handicap – What is it and how does it work?


Asian Handicap is a popular form of play that most professional players use and the form of play is something that everyone should be aware of, although it may seem complicated at first.

The form of play originates from the Asian gaming market, which entered the betting field early on in football.

How asian handicap works

Football is one of the few sports where a draw is a common result which means that there are three outcomes for each match. Win, draw or loss. If you play on the Asian handicap, you exclude a draw and there are only two outcomes per match. The gaming companies give both teams their handicap to start the match with. This makes it interesting to play in matches even if one team is a much bigger favorite.

Asian handicap is still greatest in the Asian gaming companies, but the form of gambling is becoming more and more common in the European gaming companies, such as Bet365 and Unibet. Nowadays, the gaming companies not only offer Asian Handicap games on the outcome of a football match. The game form can also be played on many other sports and for number of goals, corners etc.


As mentioned earlier, this means that only two outcomes are possible for your game, compared to the classic 1X2 games. This gives you as a player a greater chance of succeeding in meeting your game correctly. The Asian Handicap games almost always offer better odds compared to the usual European odds. Even though the games can mean exactly the same thing.

Benefits of playing Asian Handicap:

  • Greater advantage against the gaming companies’ margin.
  • Avoid the risk of limitation if you play at Asian gaming companies.
  • You can get both the whole and half the bet back.
  • You can easily find value in games even if there is a big favorite and a big underdog.

Disadvantages of playing Asian Handicap

  • The range of Asian Handicap games is not as great as other types of European games.
  • Difficult to find incorrect odds as the odds are adjusted according to how the market plays and not what the gaming companies believe about the outcome.

For the gaming companies, this means both pros and cons. The advantages for the gaming companies are that they minimize the risk of loss by balancing the bets on the two sides, which means they go plus whatever the outcome. The disadvantages for the gaming companies are that games on Asian Handicap provide a very small margin compared to regular 1X2 games. In order for players to be able to go plus length against the gaming companies, this margin is very important. Therefore, Asian Handicap is a very good game form if you are to beat the gaming companies in the longer term.


To give a clear example of an Asian Handicap game, we can imagine a match between Arsenal and Swansea. In an ordinary game market, an odds on Arsenal might be 1.35. This as a player does not give you much to pay out if you were to play at Arsenal and the game would sit.

Here, Asian Handicap can be a good alternative which means you could play Arsenal -1.0 to the odds around 2.05. That is, Swansea would start the match with a 1-0 lead. Winning Arsenal with more than one goal results in a win. If Arsenal does not win, then the outcome of your game will be a loss. Winning Arsenal with exactly one goal will get you the money back.

Asian Handicap 0.0 is thus the same as “Draw no bet” but almost always gives a better odds.

asian handicap

Another example of Asian Handicap is if we think of a more even match where the form of play works at least as well. In the Champions League final between Juventus – Real Madrid, the betting companies offered Asian handicap 0.0 on both teams. This means that you get the money back in a draw, a win if your team wins and a loss on the game if your team loses. Asian Handicap 0.0 is thus the same as “Draw no bet” but almost always gives a better odds.

Asian handicap Goal / Goal-line

An Asian goal line game is basically the same as a regular over / under game, the difference being that there are more outcomes than just winning or losing a game. E.g. you get the bet back if the number of goals is the same as the goal line you played. There are also goal lines that can give you half the game, examples of which are 1.75 and 1.25. For example, do you play in practice, over goals means that you play half of your bet over 1.50 and the other half over 2.0. If you have played on the goal line above 1.75 and the final result of the match is 2-0 you win half of your game (over 1.50) and get the bet back in the second half (2.0).


Asian Handicap games are also available to play live during matches. Many people make the mistake of believing that the Asian handicap games mean the same thing as the usual European 3-way handicap. Which means that the handicap is valid from the start of the match. The difference is that Asian Handicap games live based on what it says in the game when the game is placed. That is, if it stands 2-0 in a match and you play on the team that leads to Asian Handicap -1.5. Then the team you have played on must win by at least four goals margin for the game to be a win. Unlike if you were to play 3-way handicap -1.5. Then it is enough for Arsenal to keep its lead by two goals margin for the game to sit.

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