What Does a Clean Sheet Mean in Betting?

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What Does a Clean Sheet Mean in Betting?

Fri Oct 15, 2021 6:32 am

You may have often heard the term “clean sheet” used in relation to betting and, more specifically, football. If you are something of a sports betting novice, you may not be familiar with what a clean sheet means. Fortunately, you need not worry. We will walk you through the process in this guide. If you are ready to start betting on clean sheets and want to learn what it all means, read on to find out more.

A Clean Sheet in Football

Of course, the most common usage of the term “clean sheet” is in football, making for an ideal starting point. When we talk about clean sheets, what we are saying is that a goalkeeper (and thus, a team) has not conceded a goal. A clean sheet only applies to a single match and not a tournament or competition.

Give Me an Example...

Let us imagine that Manchester United are set to take on Aston Villa. David De Gea has been selected as Manchester United’s goalkeeper for the game. The score of this match ended 2-0 to Manchester United. This means that David De Gea (and thus, Manchester United) have managed to keep a clean sheet. Because they have conceded two goals, Aston Villa and, therefore, their goalkeeper, have not.

Does a Clean Sheet Exist Outside Football?

Yes. Anything where there is a goalkeeper or goaltender can theoretically see clean sheets come into play. For instance, in the NHL, if the goaltender manages to stop all shots, and does not concede a goal, then this is known as a “shut-out”. However, even with the name change, it amounts to the same thing as a clean sheet.

Sports that do not feature goalkeeper or goaltenders do not have “clean sheets”. So, basketball, NFL, and rugby (for instance) are not a part of this.

Clean Sheet Betting

Betting on a clean sheet is a reasonably straightforward affair at online sportsbooks. In most cases, you will get a choice between “yes” and “no” when a match is announced. For instance, if Manchester City were set to take on Atlético de Madrid in the UEFA Champions League, you would see odds for both teams keeping a clean sheet. You could choose whichever one you believed would occur and wager money on it. Assuming that your chosen team either kept or didn’t keep a clean sheet (depending on how you bet), you would win. Let us see this explained better in another clean sheet markets example.

How Do I Place a Clean Sheet Bet?

Sevilla are set to take on Borussia Dortmund. The bookmaker has decided that this is a match where you can wager on clean sheets. They offer you the following odds:

- Sevilla CF to keep a clean sheet (2.00)

- Sevilla CF to not keep a clean sheet (1.72)

- Borussia Dortmund to keep a clean sheet (4.33)

- Borussia Dortmund to not keep a clean sheet (1.20)

As you can see, the odds of keeping a clean sheet are usually longer than not keeping one. That is because most football matches result in a goal or two somewhere over two halves. You are, therefore, advised to bet against a team keeping a clean sheet.

From the odds listed above, we can deduce that Borussia Dortmund is less likely to keep a clean sheet, and Sevilla is more likely to keep a clean sheet. This also gives you an indication of how the bookmaker believes the game will go.

How to Make Serious Money with Clean Sheet Betting

One of the most profitable ways to bag money from clean sheet betting is to wager on a nil-nil draw. If you genuinely believe that neither team will score, it can be very advantageous to place clean sheet bets on both sides. As you can see from our footy example above, if both Sevilla and Dortmund keep clean sheets in a nil-nil game, you are looking at a maximum return of 6.33 (2.00 and 4.33) for every pound you bet.

Similarly, if there is a game with goals written all over it, such as knock-out competitions like the European Championship, Champions League, Europa League or World Cup, it is often ideal to bet on both sides, not keeping a clean sheet. This would also result in a reasonably good cash prize if neither side failed to do so.

If there are plenty of matches on the fly at once where you believe many goals will be scored, then it may be worth bundling these bets on teams not keeping a clean sheet into an accumulator, with insurance taken. This way, if “most” of your bets come good, and there are goals galore in each game, you are likely to get a very sizable return, as each time you win, your winnings act as the stake for the next bet.

Do Bookmakers Offer Clean Sheet Betting?

You do not have to look far and wide to find online bookmakers that accept clean sheet betting. Many of today’s leading sportsbooks provide both “yes” and “no” options when it comes to clean sheet betting. Again, the trick is learning when the ideal time to bet is. Sometimes, it is more advantageous to wager on sides keeping a clean sheet, while at other times, when there is no chance of that happening, you will want to bet on no sides doing so.

You should note that not every bookmaker offers clean sheet betting, but most do. Moreover, do not expect to see clean sheet betting available for every football match. Bookmakers may be a touch selective about the types of games they offer clean sheet betting on.

However, what is undeniable is that most of the major matches will be available for you to wager on, and some may also offer an early cash-out option, such as live, in-play bets. There are opportunities here for you in what is a strikingly simple type of bet and one that can yield rather impressive results with minimum effort and research.

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