Football accas are a weekly ritual for many people who relish the chance to win big from a small stake, which is one of the main appeals of football accumulators and multiples. If you’ve never placed an acca, or aren’t even sure what one is, you’re in the right place as we’ll explain everything you need to know.
An accumulator, often shortened to acca, is a bet that can be placed on football or just about any sport or event. A bet on Man United to beat Accrington Stanley is a single bet, with just one selection and one outcome needed to win. The simplest type of acca would be to place a double: a bet with two selections where both are needed to win. So you might combine Man United to beat their minnow opponents and on the same day Man City to beat Yeovil.
An accumulator is simply any bet with more than one unrelated selection, whereby all selections need to win for the bet to return anything.
Accas are common in football and horse racing but they can be applied to anything, for example one very famous accumulator saw a man place a bet in 1989 that by the year 2000 U2 would still be together, Eastenders would still be on the BBC, Neighbours would still be on British TV and Home and Away would still be broadcast, and that Cliff Richards would be knighted. That outlandish bet saw the lucky punter turn £30 into almost £200k – not bad eh?!
A more common acca might be on three separate horse races on the same day, picking the winner from each, or a popular one from the Premier League is to back “the big four” all to win their respective games at the weekend.
In this latter example, perhaps you might back Man United to win the early Saturday game, Arsenal to win the Saturday evening match, Chelsea to win the early Sunday game and Man City to win the 4pm kick off. For the sake of simplicity, if we assume that all sides face relatively tough games and all are priced at evens, your winnings (and the way they are calculated) would be as such, based on a £10 acca:
This demonstrates really well why accumulators are so popular – because your four bets at evens actually offer a return of 15/1, meaning you can make some serious money from a relatively low stake. Increasing the odds just a little can lead to even bigger returns because of the way these bets work and in the example above if the four sides had been priced at 5/4 (2.25 in decimal odds) the end return would be a whopping £256!
With any form of accumulator there are various options when it comes to covering the different bets. At the very simplest level, with a double, as well as covering the accumulator (i.e. the double itself) you could also cover the singles that make it up. This wouldn’t normally be classed as a multiples bet, although technically it is but a more frequently placed multiples bet is called a Trixie.
A Trixie is also known as a full cover bet and is one step up from our example above, involving three selections and as well as the treble – where all three must win – the bet also includes the three possible doubles, to make four single bets in total.
One step up from a full cover bet is a full cover bet with singles and this includes all the singles as well as all the accas, so in the case of a three-selection Trixie there would be a total of seven bets, the four as above plus three singles. This bet is called a Patent and below we have some examples of other multiples bets, although there are many more covering a huge range of bets that can be made on football and other sports.
Can I Include any Bets in an Acca or Multiple?
You can combine anything in an accumulator as long as the bets are not related, what the bookies call “related contingencies”. A controversy not so long ago involved a punter who placed a bet on it snowing in various places around the UK on Christmas Day. He thought he was in for a £7m payday after betting on what he thought was a huge accumulator. His bet included a White Christmas in Leeds and Wakefield, both at odds of 5/2, as well as in several other places, but clearly if there is snow in Leeds the odds of snow in Wakefield are not 5/2 but much lower, given it is just 12 miles away.
A good football example involves a side to win 1-0 and their top striker to score first. This is not an accumulator where the odds for the correct score and first goalscorer are effectively multiplied because if the star forward scores first their odds of winning 1-0 are automatically much lower. Instead this as calculated as a single bet – a scorecast. In the same way, backing Team A to win and both teams to score is a single bet, rather than a double involving those two selections.
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