Wednesday November 29, 2023

World Cup Will Be Most-Bet Soccer Event in US History

  • 20.5 million American adults — or 8% of the population — plan to place at least one wager.
  • The bets are projected to cumulatively total $1.8 billion.
United States soccer fans fill stands during night USMNT game
Aaron E. Martinez / American-Statesman / USA TODAY NETWORK
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With legal sports betting widely available for the first time, the upcoming World Cup is set to be a landmark soccer event for the American gaming industry.

20.5 million American adults — or 8% of the population — plan to place at least one wager on the World Cup for a cumulative total of $1.8 billion, per a new report from the American Gaming Association.

“As the first World Cup with widespread availability of legal sports betting, this will certainly be the most bet-upon soccer event ever in the U.S.,” said AGA Senior Vice President Casey Clark.

Betting could be seen as an activity to enhance the viewing experience, as 29% of American adults who plan to watch the World Cup intend to bet on it.

A majority (78%) of likely bettors say it is important to place wagers legally. That shows up in the data, as 9.8 million (48%) plan to place a bet online, while 4.7 million (23%) plan to do so at a physical casino sportsbook.

However, not all bettors will take the strictly legal route — 4.1 million (20%) plan to wager with a bookie.


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The data also skews young: Gen Z (11%) and Millenial (14%) plan to bet on the tournament at higher rates than their Gen X (8%) and Baby Boomer (2%) counterparts.

And, of course, everyone is rooting for the home team.

If given $50, 24% of Americans would bet on the United States to win it all — higher than the 19% garnered by current betting favorite Brazil (+400).

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