Soccer is an emotional rollercoaster for fans across the globe, so it is easy to see why it’s so popular with punters. Here’s a look at the top 7 most outrageous bets ever placed on soccer matches.
1. The £417k World Cup Wager
The 2010 World Cup in South Africa will be remembered for many things. The goal that never was for England’s Frank Lampard, the inexplicable handball by Luis Suarez, and the atrocity that was the vuvuzelas.
The World Cup will also be remembered by one punter for an audacious £417,000 bet that never came off. The anonymous punter placed the largest bet in World Cup history backing pre-tournament favourites Germany to beat Spain in the Semi-Final.
The match was 0-0 at half-time before Carles Puyol scored the winner on the 73rd minute. The punter missed out on a potential £800,000 pay out. It remains one of the largest single bet losses on a soccer match ever.
2. £2.50 Bet Pays £272,000 On 9-Match Accumulator
The year 2011 could not have started better for one punter with Ladbrokes. The plucky customer took the insane decision to place a £2.50 stake on a 9-match accumulator.
It was a wager that seemed even more incredible when it was revealed the punter had backed a number of underdog teams such as Wolves and Blackburn to win. It also picked Athletic Bilbao to draw with Barcelona in the Copa Del Rey. Bearing in mind that Lionel Messi, Andres Iniesta, and Xavi had just been voted in the top three positions of the 2010 FIFA Ballon d’Or.
Barcelona were set for a 1-0 win in that match until Fernando Llorente sealed the equalizer with 5 minutes remaining.
3. £4,400 African Nations Cup Betting Fail
One of the most obscene bets ever placed on a soccer match came during the 2010 African Nations Cup. A university student took the decision to slam down a bet of £4,400 on Angola to beat Mali. It was the punter’s entire student loan for the year.
When the bet was placed, Angola were 4-0 up with just 12 minutes remaining. Miraculously, Mali scored four goals in the remaining minutes to seal the unlikeliest of 4-4 draws.
To add to their misery, the punter discovered that even if the bet was right, they would have only won £44. Not the £440 they initially thought they would win.
4. The £25k Xabi Alonso Long Ranger
Former Liverpool central midfielder Xabi Alonso garnered a reputation for his long-range shooting. So much so that in 2006 one punter, Adrian Hayward, decided it made total sense to place a bet on the Spaniard scoring from his own half at some point during the season.
The bookies offered him odds of 125.00. Needless to say, Adrian lapped up the odds and placed a bet worth £200 on the outcome occurring.
Fast forward to Liverpool’s FA Cup 3rd Round tie with Luton. The Reds go on to win the game in a thrilling 5-3 victory. Alonso also bags Adrian a staggering £25,000 by scoring from his own half.
Truly, the stuff dreams are made of.
5. Moyes Misery Denise Pensioner £1 Million
A pensioner from Pembroke in West Wales was denied the most astounding of soccer betting wins when he fell one game short of earning £1 million from a standard £1 bet.
The old-timer had successfully predicted the outcome of 14 out of 15 matches over the weekend of action. He had even correctly guessed the winner of the North London Derby. However, when he only needed Manchester United to defeat Liverpool, he was let down by the perennial calamity that is David Moyes.
United failed to get the win and the pensioner had to settle for a more modest £72,000 pay out.
6. The Euro 2016 £1 Million Winner
It is not often that a story prevails about a soccer punter becoming an instant millionaire from a bet they have placed. However, in 2016 that was true for a certain British kitchen fitter by the name of Daman Chick.
The Aston Villa fan whacked down the £5 wager backing Portugal’s Eder to score the winner in the 109th minute of the Euro 2016 Final against France. The win was part of the BetVictor £1m Goal Competition.
7. Both Teams to Score Bonanza
Everybody loves a both teams to score bet. One punter will forever love them more after his 15-match BTTS accumulator saw him win £112,500 from a £15 bet.
Wolves fan Brian Matthews simply backed every team in his fifteen-game selection to score. The best part of the winning bet was that the final goal to complete the win came in injury time when Middlesbrough’s Marten de Roon scored an unlikely equalizer against Manchester City.
It was late drama of the likes that soccer betting has never seen before and is unlikely to ever see again.