1st Half vs 2nd half World Cup bets


For all the markets available on 1st half bets, you’d be forgiven for thinking that the 1st half markets would be particularly profitable. But unfortunately, that’s not entirely the case as most of the action usually occurs in the 2nd half of soccer matches.

1st Half

During the 2018 World Cup only 37% of the goals were scored in the 1st half. 1st Half betting is mainly concerned with scoring markets which makes it an interesting way to bet on the 2022 FIFA World Cup if you know what to look for.

If you want to bet on the 1st half, the most viable options would either be to bet on the 1×2 or draw-no-bet markets as the possibility of a draw is significantly higher in the 1st half of a match, whether it’s 0-0 or 1-1.

1×2 Bet

From the example below you’ll see that the predicted likelihood of a draw based on the odds favors the 1st half 1×2 bet rather than the 90 minute 1×2 bet.


You can also opt for the alternative approach if you anticipate a goal to be scored. With the draw-no-bet market, your stake will be pushed if the 1st half ends in a draw. The +0.25 handicap is also a good bet which acts the same as the draw-no-bet as it removes the possibility of a draw.

2nd Half

Live betting on the 2nd half affords you the luxury of analyzing data from a team’s 1st half performance to gauge what’s likely going to happen in the 2nd half of the match and the best bets going forward.

During the 2018 World Cup, 63% of the goals were scored in the 2nd half. Statistics also reveal that the majority of goals scored in 2010 and 2014 World Cups’ occurred in the 2nd half.

As such it makes more sense to focus on the 2nd half where more of the dramatic action takes place, leaving you with more opportunities to find value and turn a larger profit during specific betting windows.

The 2nd half also offers great pre-match betting opportunities in the form of:


During the 2018 World Cup, no less than 606 corner kicks were taken with 341 (56.3%) corners taken during the 2nd half, while only 265 corners (43.7%) were taken in the 1st half. Furthermore, 126 (20.8%) corners were taken between the 61st and 75th minutes.

When one analyzes historical data from World Cups pre-2018, it’s evident that most of the corner kicks were taken in the 1st and last 30 minutes of the matches.

To take advantage of corners betting be sure to read about the popular corner betting types.


The majority of the goals scored in the 2010, 2014, and 2018 FIFA World Cups were scored in the 2nd half during open play i.e. not from corners, free kicks, or penalties.

In the 2018 World Cup the majority of the goals were scored during the following betting windows:

  • Minute 45-60 = 28% of goals.
  • Minute 61-75 = 16% of goals.
  • Minute 75-90 = 19% of goals.

It’s important to note that 71% of the teams that scored the first goal during the 2018 World Cup went on to win. If you’re going to be betting on goals it’s imperative to do your research and to look at what the sportsbooks have to offer by comparing their 1st half vs 2nd half markets.

The correct score bet offers good value, while other bets such as the 1st goal in the 2nd half and exact goals also boast good odds.


  1. Anonymous

    1st Half bets are rubbish mate!

  2. Frank

    Second half for the win baby! I don’t know why folks still place pre-match bets or even bet on the first half for that matter!

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