Which Sports Attract the Biggest Betting Spends?

sports betting odds
For those of us taking part in it, sport is a healthy past time that we just love. But there's a multi million pound gambling industry based on sports events and outcomes. So which sports attract the biggest betting spends and why? Let's take a look.


For those of us who take part in sports, we generally do it for the love, right? Or for the significant health benefits (both physical and mental health). 

Unless you’re good enough at a sport to become professional as it, chances are you’ll never make a penny from it. And in fact, it will probably cost you to play.

But even the amateur footballers who play their subs to play on muddy pitches in the rain enjoy watching the professional game – even if they’ll never kick a ball professionally in their lives. And football isn’t the only sport attracting astronomical audiences.

TV viewing rights are competitive in many sports. And there’s another industry who makes billions in profit from sports too – the betting and gambling industry.

Whatever your personal views on betting and gambling are, this is an industry that employs thousands of people and for recreational betters (who don’t find themselves addicted) it’s often a simple way to add a layer of excitement and involvement to their biggest sporting events. Savvy betters will often take advantage of promotions like those at cookiecasino.com/promotions and sign up with a whole host of different gambling operators.

So which sports attract the biggest betting spends here in the UK? Let’s take a look based on findings from a Yougov survey.

Football – Bringing in Bettors but NOT the Big Spenders

Football (along with horse racing) leads the pack when it comes to the number of individual bettors it attracts.

However, football doesn’t attract the highest spending bettors. 

70% of UK sports bettors bet on football at least monthly.

But only 7% of those who do bet on football say they spend over £100 a month doing so.

Horse Racing – Lots of Low Spenders

Horse racing is indeed big business for the betting industry. But much like football, it attracts higher quantities of lower spending clientele.

55% of bettors bet on horse racing at least monthly, but only 8% of those who do spend over £100 a month doing so.

Cricket – The Big Bucks

The study then looked at the proportion of bettors on each sport who spend at least  £200 per month betting on that specific sport.

Cricket brings in big spenders with 18% of people who bet on the sport spending £200 or more in a month.

Other Big Spending Sports

Looking at that same £200 or more monthly spend:

  • tennis comes in second with 16% of bettors spending at the top level
  • Golf is 3rd with 14%
  • Rugby union also has 14%
  • Boxing – 12%

Casual Bettors

The Yougov hypothesis here is that the most popular sports like football and horse racing tend to attract more casual gamblers.

I think we can probably agree with that. I think most of us probably know people who never gamble but like a bet on the Grand National, for example.

So whether you like a flutter or not, there’s no denying the vast influence that sports have on the gambling industry. 





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