Even those that abhor the sport will likely know that football is a game made up of 90 minutes.
But what is less well known amongst those who don’t watch the beautiful game is that the final whistle doesn’t blow exactly at the 90 minute mark – often, a number of extra minutes will be played, and goals, red cards and the like can still occur at this late stage.
If you are new to football betting, or are a more established punter seeking clarification, it’s very important to make the distinction between these three different periods of time in the sport, and how they might impact your bets.
So this article will cover regular time, injury time and extra time.
What is Regular Time in Football?
As those who invented the modern rules of the game intended, the definition of regular time in football is the span from the moment the referee blows their first whistle and begins the match, to the point when the clock ticks over to the 90th minute.
What is Injury Time in Football?
When there’s a stoppage in play, the referee should stop their clock – when a goal goes in, when the ball goes out of play, when a player is injured, and so on.
The time these events have taken up is then added on to the end of the half to ensure a full 45 minutes of football is played in each half of the game, and so any period of play after the 45th or 90th minute is described as stoppage or injury time. In theory, that could last one second or ten minutes or more depending on what has happened during the match.
What is Extra Time in Football?
To decide cup games that end in a draw after regular and injury time, football’s rule-makers needed a way of deciding a winner.
So as early as 1897, the concept of extra time was created. While the length has differed from one competition and one country to the next, today the standard period of extra time lasts for 30 minutes, made up of two halves of 15 minutes each. Injury time also applies to extra time, so any injuries or significant stops in play will be added on to the end of each half of extra time.
Time Periods and Betting
Does Injury Time Count for Football Bets?
The period of time that the vast majority of football betting markets apply to is from the first whistle to the last.
So even as the clock ticks past the ninetieth minute mark, there are still chances for your bet to be won or lost – there are countless people up and down the land left either celebrating or commiserating following a 94th minute goal.
So, to answer the original question, injury time DOES count towards football bets, from match winner and correct score to anytime goalscorer and both teams to score.
Does Extra Time Count for Football Bets?
For the most part, extra time DOES NOT count towards the settlement of football bets.
Let’s say you had backed Italy to win the Euro 2020 final against England. Now, as we know, the Italians went on to lift the trophy following extra time and penalties, but the final score was actually 1-1.
So, bets on Italy to win were settled as losers, whereas wagers on the draw were settled as winners. The same rule applies to all other relevant markets; so if Italy and England had both scored in extra time to make the score after 120 minutes 2-2, the bookies would still settle their correct score market at 1-1.
A bet on Italy to lift the cup would be settled as a winner though.
First/anytime/last goalscorer bets, both teams to score, handicaps, over/under….all are settled at the end of the standard game (regular + injury time).
How is Injury Time Calculated in Football?
It’s one of those classic moments in football – the fourth official reveals the number of minutes of injury time to be added on via his/her electronic board, and the crowd gasps in horror or revels in the extra minutes they have to chase the next goal.
Injury time can often be the source of controversy in the modern game, with the exact calculation of the amount to be played occasionally drawing the ire of managers, fans and pundits up and down the land.
According to the rulebook, there are seven instances where the clock is stopped and time is added on: substitutions, the treatment (and stretchering off) of injured players, time wasting, when a referee is disciplining a player(s), sanctioned drinks breaks and VAR checks. Other ‘special’ circumstances, such as a streaker entering the field of play or a flare being thrown onto the pitch, also apply as necessary.
How Often are Injury Time Goals Scored?
If you split football games into ten minute groupings, it’s amazing to learn that the period from 81-90 minutes – plus stoppage time – yields more goals than any other – and almost double that of the 1-10 minute span.
The Premier League has the most injury time goals of any of Europe’s top five divisions, although it should be said that – on average – Premier League games also have more injury time played than La Liga, Bundesliga, Serie A and Ligue 1.