Football betting is an industry that these days is ever evolving. From the markets that we can wager on to the betting formats that we can apply to each bet, there is no doubt that with each season that passes, it continues to grow.

Betting on the first goalscorer is a pretty self explanatory betting market to be honest, in that your bets will be placed on whichever player you think will score the first goal of the match. The player can be from either team and as soon as that first goal goes in, the market will be settled.

Throughout this article we will be looking at a more in depth information on first goalscorer bets. These will include general betting rules, each way goalscorer betting, strategy and other goalscorer bets.

Each Way Betting

Our first port of call comes from the each way betting section. For those of you who aren’t familiar with each way betting, we’re just going to give you a very quick overview of the concept of the bet type. When betting on each way markets your bet will essentially be split into two. The first half of your bet will go on that result to win and the second half will go on the result to finish within a certain number of places and any winnings at a reduced price to the ‘win’ price.

There are many that aren’t aware that each way betting can be applied to the first goalscorer market. How it works is that if your player fails to score the first goal, most bookmakers will pay out a reduced price if they go to score at a later time in the match. Each bookmaker will vary on how many goals they will include in their each way structure, but most will include the first 5 goals at 1/3 the starting price odds.

For example, let’s say we place a £10 bet for a player to score first at odds of 10/1 each way. The original stake of the bet will now be split into two sections; £5 on the player to score first at 10/1 and £5 for the player to score within the first 5 goals.

Our player goes on to score the first goal, which will mean we win the first part of the bet and also win the second part of the bet. The first part gets us £50 for scoring first plus £16.65 for our place prize (1/3 odds of 10/1 = 3.33/1 x £5 = £16.65 total).

In the same scenario our player fails to score the first goal but does score the 3rd goal, meaning that we lost the first bet at odds of 10/1, but win the second bet at 1/3 of those odds (3.33/1). Finally, if our player fails to score any of the first 5 goals or at all in the match then we would lose the bet in its entirety.

First Goalscorer Rules

Whilst most bookmakers will have their own rules for each betting market, we have put together some of the more general terms for the first goalscorer market.

  • Player Doesn't Start - If you back a player on the FGS market and that player doesn’t start the game they can still win the bet providing they have come on before a goal is scored. If that player enters the pitch after a goal has been scored then all bets will become void.
  • Starts After First Goal - For each way betting, if a player enters the pitch after a goal has been scored then both the win and each way section will be void.
  • Substitutions & Sending Off If a player has been substituted or has been sent off before the first goal has been scored then bets on that player will be down as a loss.
  • Abandoned Matches - In the event of a game being abandoned at any point then any bets on FGS that hadn’t already been settled will be down as void. If a goal had already been scored then all settled markets will remain. If a player has been removed from the game via either substitution or dismissal prior to the abandonment of the game then all settled bets will remain as loses.
  • Own Goals - If the first goal of the game is officially awarded as an own goal then this goal will not count towards this market and all bets will remain. The second of the game will then count as the ‘first goal’ providing that this again isn’t an own goal.


Betting on any particular betting market will encourage a certain amount of strategy involved. We’ve put together a few tips to help you make better decisions when betting on the first goalscorer market.

It may seem blindingly obvious, but you want to find players who are scoring freely from a certain team for first goalscorer bets. Choosing the top scorer is an easy pick, but they are top scorer because they are simply better than their teammates at sticking the ball in the back of the net.

Working alongside the above, look to players who are in form and who have managed to bag a few goals in the games leading up. A lot of players will go through hot streaks with their goal scoring, so try and find a pattern with your selections to see if a player is on form or not.

Some players have a certain knack of scoring goals against certain teams more than others. Compare to the two teams to see if any player particularly enjoys playing against them.

Try to select players who are going to be the designated free kick and penalty kick takers. These guys are always going to be in and around the goals, whether they are defenders or a striker. It’s important to pick players who are going to be given opportunities and at some point in the match, your dead ball specialist will likely have at least one good chance.

In fact, the dead ball specialists are a great way to utilise the each way betting function for this market. As we mentioned, at some point in the game they are going to get a chance, whether that is at 0-0 or 2-1, allowing each way betting to come into play.

Other Scorer Bets

As you can imagine, there are dozens of different goalscorer bets to choose from these days and we’ve picked out a selection of the more popular ones to get stuck into below.

  • Last Goalscorer is pretty self-explanatory in that you can bet on who you think will be the last scorer in a match. It works in very much the same way as first goalscorer, but you wont be able to get each way betting on this market.
  • Anytime goalscorer means that you can bet on a player to score at any time throughout the game. This often gives much shorter odds than the first scorer due to the range of time you have and possibilities for any player to score. You’ll find that this market is best used for players who are higher priced on the first goalscorer market.
  • First Goalscorer double chance will allow you to make two selections for your first goalscorer bet and then if either score first, you win. This works well to mix in a player from each team, giving you more range, but in return, much reduced odds than the original bet.
  • Player scores both halves means that you can bet on a player to score in both halves of the match. If that player only scores in one or neither, then your bet will lose.
  • Goalscorer matched bets are still pretty new to the betting industry and for this bet type you will have to choose from two players who will score the most goals in the match. The result and how many total team goals that are scored will be irrelevant in this head-to-head shootout.