It was coming, but the news that all professional football in the UK may have shocked some punters. The Premier League has suspended all matches until at least the 3rd of April due to the coronavirus outbreak. All major football competitions in Europe, including the Champions League, have taken similar measures as well as many other sports across the globe.
The NBA has completely cancelled its entire season with several sports set to follow suit. This brings up the question of what happens to our outstanding football bets? With so many question marks surrounding what will happen next, should we expect all bets to be void? Here we’ll look at the different types of bets and how they may be affected.
Outstanding Football Bets – Will They Be Voided?
As far as we know, European competitions and the English Premier League are only suspended. This means that over the next weeks, or months they could be re-scheduled, or called off completely. News reports suggest that the preference would be to push all matches and complete the season at some point during the summer (all being well).
This solution would guarantee that Euro 2020 be pushed to 2021 as there would not be enough time to complete both competitions. Furthermore, it is unclear how the coronavirus outbreak may look in several months’ time; UEFA is set to announce the tournaments delay sometime next week.
We are in uncharted territory of course, but below we discuss the types of bets you may have placed, and the likelihood of them being paid out or voided. Bookmakers have rules in place for postponed fixtures, but this is a different situation to a single game being called off because of the weather. It's also worth noting these rulebooks aren't universal. Each betting site will have its own set of guidelines.
What Happens to My Premier League Bets For the 14th and 15th March?
Bets placed on any of the weekend’s Premier League matches have a high chance of being voided. Most bookies have already voided these bets with the announcement coming earlier today.
Under normal circumstances, a bet is void if you bet on a match that is postponed and not able to be re-scheduled within a 48-hour period. As bets on the weekend’s games fall into that category, stakes should be returned.
Liverpool to Win the Premier League Bets
This is an interesting one. Liverpool are runaway league leaders and need only two more wins to be crowned Champions. If they can’t play, however, then they can’t win. Bookies may take different approaches on this market as it’s not something they would have come across before.
As we’ve mentioned, there is an intention to complete the season, so your bets could be settled as normal.
On the other hand, if the powers that be decide the league won’t be completed things could get messy. We would like to think that bookies would payout. To be honest quite a few have already paid the market out. Paddy Power did so back in November. Let’s hope that this circumstance doesn’t arise, but if you are in doubt – we would suggest you contact your bookie's customer support channel as soon as any news is announced. As for now, your bet should be fine.
Other Outright Bets – Top Four Finish, Top Goalscorer and Relegation/Promotion Bets
These bets fall into the same category as the Liverpool dilemma. The season is set to conclude at some point, so these bets should stand as normal. In theory anyway.
We wouldn’t expect to see any of these markets cancelled just yet as it is not known when or if the season will resume. The expectation is the spread of the virus will slow, and sports will return to a ‘normal’ playing calendar. There are too many issues that could arise if the league is not completed, in terms of Champions League spots and teams finishing in the bottom three. It could end up in a mess.
There are grey areas though if the league isn’t completed. If for example, you’ve picked Jamie Vardy as top scorer who looks on course to collect the golden boot will you be paid as a winner? The truth is, we don’t know. If bookies pay this as a winner, then they would need to settle all other bets as losers, which could seem unfair. These types of decisions will likely be on a case-by-case basis with some opting for that option, and some possibly voiding all bets.
In saying that, we are hopeful that the league will restart where it left off. Because of that, we would suggest that season-long bets will be unaffected.
Euro 2020 Gets Pushed to Euro 2021
Markets for Euro 2020 have been open for some time with punters able to bet on fixtures as well as outright winners etc. There have already been a number of bets placed on the event, so what happens to those?
Although these are similar to the season-long bets as discussed above – the tournament hasn’t started yet. This makes life less complicated for bookies. It has been announced that UEFA will push Europe’s top International football event to next summer, to allow leagues to conclude as need be. Find out more about this on our dedicated page here.
Qualifiers haven’t yet fallen victim to the outbreak, but we expect they will in the coming days.
The main points to take are that for Premier League bets this weekend, they will likely be voided, and season-long bets will remain open. If you have a very specific bet that’s not covered here, we would recommend reaching out to your bookie.
Frequently Asked Questions
❌ Q: How Long Is the Premier League Postponed For?
A: Until at least the 3rd of April.
⚽ Q: What Happens to My Bets?
A: The settlement of bets will vary, depending on what bet you have placed. Read above to find out more.
🥇Q: Will Liverpool be Crowned Champions?
A: The season is expected to continue at some point which would give Liverpool the chance to win the league. In the eventuality that the league is cancelled, then it is not clear.