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What is an accumulator? ACCA insurance matched betting

An accumulator (ACCA) is one bet consisting of two or more selections.

All selections need to win for the bet to be a winner. Multiply the odds of each selection to calculate the return on a winner.

Example of 5 team ACCA

Here is a typical £1.00 five-fold accumulator: We have selected 5 separate teams for our bet.

Paddy Power £1 accumulator

The bet wins if all of our selections win their respective matches. A £1 winning bet on these selections returns £10.10 (including £1 stake).

Accumulator odds

To calculate the odds of an ACCA, multiply the odds of each selection. Then take the total odds figure and multiply by your stake.

Placing an ACCA

Betting on an accumulator is simple.

  • a). Choose selectionsSelect which teams you want in your ACCA.
  • b). Check bet before confirmingCheck you have the correct selections, i.e. match date, kick off times etc.
  • c). Decide your stakeDo you need to place the maximum stake for an ACCA offer? 
  • d). Place BetFinally, click confirm to place your ACCA at the bookie.

Accumulator offers

Many bookies offer a free bet if one of your selections in a five-fold ACCA loses. Football ACCA offers are popular, advertised in various guises like “ACCA insurance”, “ACCA protection”. Clearly, the bookies are encouraging you to bet on accumulators.

You can profit from football ACCA offers. The free bet incentive if one selection loses in your ACCA is key.

ACCA insurance strategies

ACCA insurance is where the bookie offers a refund as a free bet if one team loses in your accumulator. This is mostly on 5-fold and 6-fold ACCAs.

Let’s look at the main methods of tackling accumulator insurance offers.

Lay sequentially

  1. Pick 5 selections that each have different start times.
  2. Place the 5-fold ACCA bet.
  3. Lay the first leg and wait until the first match is finished. If your selection wins then lay the second leg. Then lay each leg separately one by one and stop laying if one leg loses.
  4. Hope for a free bet refund.
OddsMonkey Tools ACCA - Lay Sequential

The advantage of sequentially laying is that one losing selection means you can stop laying. Conversely, the odds may drift on the later legs leaving you with a potential loss.

Place a 5-fold ACCA. Lay the first leg, wait until the first match finishes.  If your selection wins, then lay the second leg.  Lay each leg of your ACCA until one team loses.

You need matches that start at different times,  and need to remember to lay each leg,

No Lay

  1. Look for selections as close to the minimum odds as possible that are a close match to the exchange price.
  2. Back the ACCA,
  3. Do not lay at the exchange

This is the quickest ACCA method, as you are not checking to lay sequential legs.  However, if 2 or more teams lose your whole bet loses.

The no lay method is essentially punting. You don’t lay your ACCA, so this is not risk-free.  You will be looking for low odds selections to enhance the expected value.

Lay All At Start

  1. Find very low odds teams as close as possible to the minimum odds required.
  2. Lay all teams at the exchange before the matches start.

This is a good method for shop coupons (with no minimum odds requirement). Look for the strong favourites at home or against lower-ranked opponents: Celtic, Barcelona, Real Madrid, Man City, Juventus, PSG, Ajax.

Lay at Start is not risk-free. Qualifying losses could exceed the profit obtained from the free bet refund. However, Lay all is quick, you don’t need to remember to lay sequential legs.

Winnings boost

An alternative to ACCA refund offers is where the bookie gives a percentage boost on your multiple bet.  These should be treated as an advantage play rather than matched betting.

Bet365: A percentage winnings boost on 4+ ACCAs if all teams win. Simply choose teams that are closely matched to the exchange price. These are often negative expected value (EV-) bets, but are good for account health.

Unibet: Percentage boosts on winning trebles and above.


Whilst accumulators are traditionally loved by bookmakers, we can use various tactics to make a profit from ACCAs. Accumulators are popular with traditional punters, but matched bettors are also now taking advantage of ACCAs.

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