The Nigerian sports betting market is one of the fastest-growing markets in Africa. It is expected to increase by over 20% over the next 5 years.
Sports betting is legal in all 36 states of Nigeria and around 30% of Nigerians bet on sports daily.
Sports betting is a big business in the country as it is extremely popular, which has garnered international interest and led to several global bookmakers operating in Nigeria. Over 45 different companies operate in Nigeria and this number is certainly expected to grow in the near future. Over ₦1.8 billion ($5 million US) is spent on sports betting in Nigeria with nearly 60 million citizens betting daily.
Nigerians are sports fanatics, so there is no surprise in the massive growth the sports betting market has seen. The locals are passionate about football.
The beautiful game is the driving force in sports betting and is considered to be the most popular sport in the country. However, bets are still placed daily on a wide variety of sports including rugby, tennis, basketball and more.
The English Premier League is the most bet on tournament in Nigeria but a lot of people enjoy betting on other unconventional sports and games as well. There are so many betting options available that you would not be able to keep count and not only are traditional bets popular in the country but also live betting, which has become a new craze in the betting industry.
Outright bets are the most popular in Nigeria including predicting tournament winners. Virtual sports are also in demand with greyhound racing leading the way in recent times.
Whether you are new to sports betting or experienced in the space, you will have no problems placing bets given how easy betting has become with the advent of technology. Sports betting sites/apps provide all the help you need with tutorials and a step-by-step guide on how to place bets and understand betting terms.
Getting into sports betting is easy but it is vital to learn the basics to be able to enjoy the betting experience and potentially make some money because when you win, you are happy.
Always remember to take advantage of special bonus and promotion offers that come up on Nigerian betting platforms. You are almost guaranteed to find a welcome bonus on every platform when you make your first deposit.
Do keep an eye out for promotions at all times.
Online Sports Betting in Nigeria
We cover what sports betting is in depth on our website, here – Sports Betting
Sports betting adds to the fun and excitement of sport, which is not short of thrills anyway. What sports betting does add unlike watching sports just as a fan is – money.
Bet with your mind rather than your heart and it will give you a great opportunity to earn some good money. Real sports betting, no matter how experienced or skillful you are when it comes to placing bets, is something that we cannot control. The outcome is decided by those players on the pitch and luck places an important role in that.
Sport is dynamic so be ready to lose on and off but bet responsibly while learning to be patient. Let’s have a look of how to bet on sports in Nigeria.
Step 1: Select your online sportsbook/oddsmaker/bookmaker as they are called
Nigeria’s sports betting market is extremely competitive so take your time to decide which platform you want to use for betting and are interested in creating an account with.
Make sure that the online platform you select is licensed so as to make sure your money is secure. Evaluate the promotions and bonuses as well and choose a platform that you are comfortable in using and find easy to access and place bets on.
SportyBet is one such platform that has some terrific promotions and has a very user-friendly interface that gives its users a fun experience when betting.
Ideally, you want a sportsbook that has a presence in multiple countries and has a wide variety of sports available for betting. SportyBet checks all the criteria of a top betting website so do check it out! Their “refer a friend bonus” is something that is really eye-catching.
Step 2: Register on the sportsbook platform and create an account
Once you have decided on the sportsbook(s) you are going to use to place your bets with, the next step is registering on their platform. This is pretty straightforward as you have to fill in some basic details and link your account depending on which payment method you select.
Step 3: Deposit money in your betting account to start betting
Once you are all registered and the account is verified, the next step is actually depositing money into your account so that you can start betting on various sports.
This is also very easy and quick. All Nigerian sportsbooks and most of the international bookmakers that operate in Nigeria have the option of depositing money in Naira.
Most websites will have multiple payment options to choose from. Select whichever method you prefer and set it up. The most popular method in Nigeria for depositing funds are via Debit/Credit cards followed by bank transfers.
Certain sportsbooks allow for payment through bank apps or even USSD short codes as they partner with certain banks. If you prefer this option then make sure you check if your shortlisted bookmaker has this option available.
Not all payment methods come free of additional charges like service fees so do check on this when selecting your payment method/sportsbook if you wish to avoid this nominal charge.
Online payment portals are becoming increasingly common in the country with Opay and Quickteller leading the way. Cryptocurrency is also becoming a new method of payment but only foreign platforms have this option in Nigeria.
With the multiple options available for transfer of funds, there is no excuse of inconvenience when it comes to setting up a betting account.
Go ahead and prepare yourself to enjoy the exciting and unpredictable sports betting world!
Step 4: Utilise your first deposit/welcome bonus
You will almost be guaranteed a welcome/first deposit bonus when you register on any sports betting website. Do make sure you read the terms and conditions, and use this welcome bonus before it lapses.
Everyone loves free gifts and discounts and the welcome bonus practically allows you a first free bet without using your own money. As soon as you finish steps 1-3 above, latch onto the welcome bonus and utilise it.
First deposits vary across platforms and terms are also different so pick wisely and do not waste this freebie.
Step 5: What are you now waiting for? Place your bets and earn some money!
You’ve done all the boring stuff already if you have made it to step 5. This one-time exercise is worth it and honestly should not take you long. It may take you less time than reading this step-by-step guide, in fact to finish the process.
You are now, all ready to bet on sports online and win some money. Do remember that winning on sports betting needs not only a little bit of luck but also lots of skill.
The best and most successful bettors spend lots of time analysing teams, players and external factors that can influence a game before making decisions about their bets. Still, even after all this, there is no guarantee of winning because luck has a role to play and there are certain factors that can affect a game that are beyond our control like injuries, red cards, weather or simply a miraculous moment.
What analysis and research does do, however, is increases your chances of potentially winning by relying less on luck so it can be vital in sports betting. Another golden rule you must follow is to remember that betting is devoid of loyalty so bet with your mind and not your heart.
Your favourite team may not be the best team so be smart when you bet and bet responsibly.
How much money do I need for online sports betting in Nigeria?
You do not need much money at all to start betting online in Nigeria. In fact, it is pretty low. You can place a bet for as low as N50 but the more money you bet, the higher the returns. Do not be misguided by this, however.
Contests like the jackpot or bets with extreme underdogs coming out on top can all give unbelievable returns even for the smallest value bets so do not worry about the amount you use to bet. As long as you can afford a bet and are willing to lose that amount, you should have no fear in placing the bet.
Sports betting should be treated more as a hobby and form of entertainment and not as a business as there is lots of luck involved.
You do not want to stake all your money in betting so set yourself a budget and bet with money you can afford to lose only.
Typically, the minimum stake on most online betting platforms in Nigeria is around N100 but there are some that have a minimum bet of even N30.
Is Sports Betting Legal in Nigeria?
Yes, sports betting is legal and regulated by the National Lottery Regulatory Commission. The commission controls bets related to sports in Nigeria. Operators are required to obtain a permit for betting operations in the country and have to apply for annual licenses to maintain their legal status.
Sports betting being fully legal in Nigeria has enabled more than 1/3rd of Nigeria’s population to turn to sports betting in the country. It is one of the fastest-growing betting markets in Africa and has boosted the economy to levels that the government did not envisage.
A lot of the Nigerian physical betting shops have converted to online betting platforms to sustain themselves and stay relevant.
Sports betting is not classified as a game of chance by Nigeria, however, it is a highly regulated market and only those who are 18 years or older can bet in the country.
Online sports betting has no official laws and that means online sportsbooks cannot be officially regulated as per a particular law. Yet, the government has welcome international betting platforms with open arms and allows licensed websites to operate betting in Nigeria.
Popular Sports for Betting in Nigeria
Although online sportsbooks have multiple sports to bet on, it is no surprise that football is the most popular sport in Nigeria. Nigerians love football and are ardent followers of the top European leagues, the FIFA World Cup and Euros.
Basketball, tennis and boxing are also extremely popular in the West African nation. Cricket and rugby also receive a lot of bets in the country. Nigerians also love to place bets on other sports in different countries like the NFL Super Bowl in the US.
Football is a religion in Nigeria. The online sports betting market in the country is dominated by football betting and this is rapidly rising all the time.
England’s Premier League, Spain’s La Liga and Italy’s Serie A are very popular for betting in Nigeria and so is the UEFA Champions League. The Malta and Venezuela leagues are also extremely common for betting in the West African country alongside the FIFA World Cup, AFCON and European Championships.
The rise in football betting is due to the entry of several sports betting companies and the meteoric rise in popularity of European football.
Most Nigerians love to bet because they enjoy the thrill along with the fun and excitement of the actual games. Money is an additional bonus if they do win the bet(s).
Football is extremely vital for Nigeria’s success as it brings people together and breaks all religious and social barriers. The nation unites as one when the Nigeria national football team, popularly known as the Super Eagles, takes the field.
Nigeria has been blessed with some top talents who have achieved a lot at the highest level including the likes of Kanu Nwankwo, Jay-Jay Okocha, John Obi-Mikel, Segun Odegbami and Odion Ighalo.
The locals love football and betting so combining the 2 is a dream for the Super Eagles fans. Nigerians commonly bet on the simple bets like the outright winner but other popular bets are over/under and an Asian Handicap for the number of corner kicks and shots on goal.
Football may be the king in Nigeria, however, there are more sports as well that the country loves.
Although Nigeria does not have an international basketball record to boast about, is is the second-most popular sport. Major credit for this has to be given to NBA Hall-of-Famer Hakeem Olajuwon who was born in Lagos, Nigeria and went on to dominate in the best basketball league in the world so Nigerians have turned to the sport, giving them a sense of pride that “The Dream” brought to West Africa following his success in the NBA and strong performances when representing the USA.
Basketball is a much faster sport than football and has a lot of betting options in terms of the lines on offer. The over/under market sees some highly competitive and tempting odds that depend on the line.
Betting on players in NBA matches has become extremely popular and Nigerians typically have their favourites who they back to score a certain number of points to make some money.
Boxing was the second-most popular sport in Nigeria for the longest time but basketball has seen some rapid growth in recent times. However, boxing is still extremely popular and Nigerians love the sport.
Dambe Boxing is the biggest reason for the rise and growth of boxing in Nigeria. Dambe is a form of kickboxing that originated in the Northern Hausa regions of Nigeria and spread to the other parts of Western Africa.
This was the reason as to why boxing really picked up in the country because boxing is a way of building prestige and honour. Boxing is not a popular sport for betting across the globe, however, it has a very high place in Nigeria.
Common bets in boxing are the fight winner, number of rounds and the way in which the match will end (knockout, decision or draw).
Nigerians have found an affinity for rugby and for some reason, it is a popular sport when it comes to betting. This is extremely surprising given that Nigeria is not known for rugby at all.
The local sportsbooks, however, painted a very different picture having received a massive number of bets from Nigerians on the 2019 Rugby World Cup that was held in Japan.
Track and field athletics have succeeded in bringing home medals for Nigeria at the summer Olympics and holds a special place in a lot of people’s hearts.
Nigeria has won 3 gold medals so far at the Olympics and 2 of them have come in athletics so it is no surprise that athletics is a popular bet for Nigerians. The other gold came in football in 1996.
13 of Nigeria’s 25 Olympic medals have come from athletics (6 bronze and 5 silver along with the 2 golds). Nigeria is a proud nation and this pride is what motivates them to back their athletes and bet money on the sports they are good at.
Are there taxes on betting in Nigeria?
Yes, winnings are taxed in Nigeria at 20%.
Mobile Betting Options in Nigeria
Nigerians can place bets on their smartphones and tablets by using the mobile version of websites or then downloading the apps, if available, of their online sportsbooks.
Online betting has become the new thing that in Africa and making deposits and withdrawals has never been easier.