Single or combined? Safety versus temptation

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First of all, it is important to know that a single bet does not necessarily consist of favouring the home side, the away side or the draw (in case a draw is possible). A bet is simple when it is made up of a single selection.

We can bet on Real Madrid to win, for a match to end with more or less than 2.5 goals, for Lionel Messi or “X” player to score at any time, etc. By this we mean that it doesn’t matter what the market is for a bet to be a single bet or not.

In that sense, a combined bet must have a minimum of 2 selections, while the maximum varies according to each bookmaker (12, for example).

From this introduction we can start to realise that single bets are just simpler and require less work than the others. It is enough to focus on our selection and research around it until finally confirming the bet.

Combinations, on the other hand, require more technique and also carry a much higher risk 

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To take them seriously, it is necessary to study each selection as if it were a single bet.

The greater the size of a multi-bet, the greater the chance of failure. Let’s be clear that in football, tennis, basketball and any other sport, results are defined by details in many cases.

Financially, single bets could be defined as more “friendly”. Because we have better control of the money and because the anxiety and adrenalin that can be so counterproductive in combination bets are not at play.

In relation to the latter, and here we have a good point against the combined betting, an incorrect use of our bankroll will be able to bankrupt us much faster than with single bets.

Tips and conclusions


Based on the above, we could well associate single bets with a certain security and multi bets with the temptation they are capable of generating. Incidentally, it is natural that the potential benefits of a parlay bet can be a bit of a turn-off for some bettors, especially if they are just starting out in the world of gambling.

Let’s not forget that the final odds of a parlay are obtained by multiplying the odds of each selection against each other, but let’s not lose sight of the fact that putting together a parlay responsibly means getting informed and analysing each element in depth.

In that respect, and despite not being a guarantee of anything for obvious reasons, a single bet is much more reliable for a novice player.

At this point, the answer to the question in the title is clear: single bets are a good place to start. But as we know that there are always those daring enough to go for the big one with a “super-match”, we’ll take this space to make some recommendations.

Firstly, if you are a beginner, ideally you should avoid including more than 5 selections in your betting combination. If you become more confident over time, you will be able to make a bigger one, although it is never advisable.

On the other hand, it is essential to bet on well known sports, a suggestion that is even more important if you plan to take a risk with a well loaded betting combination.

We have already emphasised the importance of being well informed and of always having good statistical material to back you up. Another tip for parlay bets is to include different markets.

At the same time, if you are hesitating between a single and a multiple (of 2 or 3 selections, for example) with quite similar odds, keep in mind that – on paper – it is always more likely to get one bet right than three.

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