Many fans enjoy a little flutter during the season and, the booming business of football betting has been a magnet for the opportunists.

If you’re a user of social media, you won’t have got very far without bumping into a football tipster.

You know the type. They’re seemingly constantly in the process of turning £10 into £1,000 or enjoying a hot streak of 11 consecutive winners. “Follow us for our next big-money winner!”. Sigh.

In reality, to have that kind of hit rate – particularly when betting on lower-league or non-league football – would require an exceptional amount of knowledge or an exceptional amount of luck. Or, most likely, both.

The fact is, most of these tipsters are phonies, simply out to get your attention. They make their money not from successful and smart gambling but, in most cases, either by charging a subscription fee for their shoddy services or being paid commission by the bookies.

There is an alternative, however. A way of betting on sport that always results in profit. It sounds too good to be true but, with matched betting, it is possible.

Matched betting involves generating a profit using the bonuses offered by bookies – usually in the form of free bets. The risk is neutralised by placing two qualifying bets on opposite outcomes – so you get your stake back no matter what.

It’s a legitimate and sustainable way of making money online at home and thousands of people do it every day.

Matched betting services

The main obstacle with matched betting is finding the time to do it and working out the calculations to reduce the risk. Having identified a demand to solve that particular problem, several matched betting services have popped up over the past few years.

The most established matched betting service is Profit Accumulator, which has more than 20,000 subscribers. The company was founded in 2014 and is the UK’s leading site of its type.

Members pay a monthly fee to access software including matched betting calculators, step-by-step guides and video tutorials. There’s a team of experts on hand to help members of all levels with any part of the process and they also flag up which offers to do every day to guarantee a profit.

Who is it for?

Pretty much anyone over the age of 18 can use matched betting. You do need accounts with bookmakers but it isn’t gambling.

Many people who do it are football fans, who like to bet on the game, knowing they will make a profit either way.

A lot of people who do it are, by their own admission, not sports fans in any way. It’s particularly popular with students and full-time parents, who see it as a way of topping up their income every month in their own time, from home.

How to get started

It can be quite daunting at first and it’s clearly not for everyone and that’s why most matched betting sites offer a free trial. Profit Accumulator, for instance, shows new users complete two bookmaker sign-up offers that can earn users up to £45.

The advice would be to do a bit of research to try to get your head around how it works, watch the videos and, if you think it’s for you, give it a whirl.

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