Half of Adult U.S. Sports Fans Plan To Bet on the World Cup


Nov 14 2022 06:01PM

Survey from BettorOff, the sports wagering information platform, revealed high interest in the global event that starts Sunday — with 18% planning to bet on soccer for the first time and a majority planning to bet more on soccer after the World Cup 

Half of adult U.S. sports fans said they plan to bet on the FIFA World Cup that begins Sunday in Qatar, according to a survey commissioned by BettorOff, the sports wagering information platform dedicated to transparency in picks and results. 

Seeming to reflect the expanding interest in soccer in the U.S., as well as the influence of major sporting events, 49% of self-described sports fans said they planned to bet, 18% of those will be betting on soccer for the first time, and 74% said they planned to bet more on soccer after the World Cup. The 2026 World Cup will be hosted in North America, with the majority of sites in the U.S. 

“There is an exciting intersection of interest and opportunity surrounding the World Cup,” said Alex Dubin, CEO and founder of BettorOff. “As pro soccer and online sports betting explode across the US, we expect this World Cup to be a tipping point for soccer fans and bettors across the country.” 

It could be a boon to the major sportsbooks in the U.S. The total global handle for the 2018 World Cup in Russia was an estimated $146 billion, according to FIFA. At the time, only three U.S. states (Nevada, Delaware and New Jersey) offered legal sports betting, and it was largely limited to retail locations. 

Among the other key findings from the survey: 

  • 68% plan to wager less than $200 over the course of the month-long tournament
  • 51% will focus bets on certain teams, including 13% who say they only plan to bet on matches in which the U.S. participates. 
  • Nearly 27% say they plan to bet on every match, and 22% will only bet on games in knockout rounds 
  • 79% said they will wager on games even if they can’t watch them, given the significant difference in time zones of starting times. 

Most will bet using money lines (55%) and parlays (42%). Only 25% plan to bet on props and 19% plan to bet totals (over/under).

The survey was conducted among 1,500 self-identified adult sports fans who reside in the 21 states (and Washington D.C.) where online sports betting is legal. In seeking to understand wagering interest ahead of the World Cup, the BettorOff survey also found: 

  • 55% of adult U.S. sports fans say they trust handicappers only "a little" or not at all.
  • 65% of adult U.S. sports fans said they would be interested in a platform that tracks picks to verify results and expertise.