The 2023/24 La Liga season began on August 11 and will continue until the final round of fixtures on May 26. The division features 20 teams, each of whom will play home and away against every other team in the league.
As the top flight of Spanish football, La Liga is one of the biggest and most popular leagues in the world. It is home to two of the biggest clubs in the sport, Real Madrid and Barcelona, and numerous world-class stars ply their trade in this competition.
In this article we provide some La Liga betting tips, looking at the main markets to focus on and providing some information on many of the teams in the league.
La Liga Team Betting
The most common way to bet on La Liga in the 2023/24 season is to place a wager on an individual game. There will be 380 encounters taking place throughout the campaign, so you will not be short of opportunities to place a bet on Spain’s top tier.
The match result market is the first you will come across. This is the most popular form of bet and the easiest to understand, since the only task is to pick a home win, an away win or a draw. As ever, the sportsbooks will set their odds in relation to factors such as team strength, team form, and the venue where the contest is taking place.
Successful sports bettors are always on the hunt for value. In this regard, there are usually better markets to target than match result.
Two alternatives are correct score and handicap betting. The first is where you predict the exact scoreline of the match – not just a Getafe win, but Getafe 2-0 Rayo Vallecano. Needless to say, this is a tricky market to master.
Handicap betting is where the underdog is given an artificial lead to even the playing field. If Barcelona are at home to Alaves, you might decide to tip a home win with a -3.5 handicap. This would in effect be predicting Barcelona to win by a three-goal margin or more, and it would return much better odds than simply backing a straightforward Barcelona victory.
You do not necessarily need to pick a winner either. Both teams to score is a popular market if you either do or do not fancy goals at both ends. Similarly, you can predict over/under 2.5 goals, with markets also offered for 0.5, 1.5, 3.5, 4.5 and more. If Atletico Madrid and Athletic Bilbao meet in a crunch clash, you might put some money on it being a low-scoring affair.
You can also focus on a particular team rather than both. There are markets in which you can predict how many goals team A will score. You could also tip team B to score in both halves, or score the first goal. The win to nil option is worth taking up if a strong defence is meeting an insipid attack.
Finally, match event betting is when you focus on the occurrence of a particular event during the 90 minutes. Options include penalty scored, total shots, total corners and more.
Spanish La Liga tips at the start of a season tend to focus on the race to be the La Liga winner. Barcelona triumphed by a comfortable margin last year and they will be aiming to claim back-to-back titles for the first time since 2019.
It has been a relatively quiet summer at the Camp Nou, with Barcleona continuing to grapple with financial issues. They have added Ilkay Gundogan and Inigo Martinez on free transfers, plus paid a small fee for Oriol Romeu. But the experience of Jordi Alba and Sergio Busquets will be missed.
Barcelona’s main aim going into the campaign will be to improve upon their dismal recent showings in Europe. Xavi Hernandez would surely swap another La Liga title for a European gong, so that could affect Barcelona’s domestic ambitions.
Real Madrid could not keep pace with Barcelona last time out and they have since lost top scorer Karim Benzema. But Jude Bellingham has made a fantastic impression following his move from Borussia Dortmund, and Real Madrid’s squad contains a fine blend of youth and experience.
Atletico Madrid could also challenge after their strong showing in the second half of last season. Antoine Griezmann is one of the best players in La Liga and he looks at home at the Estadio Wanda Metropolitano. Diego Simeone is a fierce competitor but it would take a huge effort to finish above both Real Madrid and Barcelona.
Other outright markets include top four and relegation. The consensus is that Barcelona, Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid will take three of the CL spots, leaving just one for the rest of the league to fight over.
Real Sociedad took it last term and they will be contenders again. Sevilla, the EL victors in 2022/23, should be much stronger in La Liga after a disappointing showing last time out. Other potential contenders include Real Betis, Villarreal and Athletic Bilbao.
The three teams that accumulate the fewest points after 38 rounds of fixtures will be relegated to the Segunda Division, the second tier of the Spanish game.
Promoted trio Granada, Las Palmas and Alaves are expected to be involved in the demotion dogfight. Cadiz, Granada, Real Mallorca and Almeria have also been tipped to struggle, but one or more of those sides will no doubt outperform expectations.
La Liga Player Betting
There are also numerous La Liga tips related to players rather than teams. Many match markets focus on individuals rather than the collective, even if there are fewer opportunities in this field.
The most popular choices are anytime goalscorer, first goalscorer and last goalscorer, although the third of those options is not quite as common as the first two. By studying a player’s recent form, their record against the opposition in question, and their levels of fitness, you can have success by tipping them to find the back of the net.
For example, if your research shows that Robert Lewandowski has scored the opening goal in a large percentage of Barcelona matches, he could be a good pick to be the first goalscorer in their next fixture.
Since there are more opportunities for success, the odds you can get on an anytime goalscorer are always shorter than if you tip the same player to be the first goalscorer.
Some might also like the look of things like player A to receive a yellow card or player B to receive a red card. Again, research is vital. Study the two teams’ respective disciplinary records and have a look to see if any of their players regularly get in trouble with the referee.
Do not neglect tactics in your preparation. If a team is going to play Real Madrid away from home, they will not have much possession. As such they are likely to make more tackles and therefore more fouls. These are the factors you need to consider before betting on La Liga.
The most well-known outright player market is for the La Liga top scorer. Robert Lewandowski was the most prolific attacker in the division last time out and he is the favourite to finish as the chief goal-getter once more.
Lewandowski is one of the greatest strikers of his generation. He is probably past his best now – the Poland international turns 35 in August – but he remains an expert at putting the ball in the back of the net. Provided he stays fit, Lewandowski should score plenty.
Real Madrid have lost Karim Benzema, which is part of the reason why Lewandowski is available at such short odds. Vinicius Junior could play in a more central role following Benzema’s departure, and some will like the look of the Brazilian to finish as top scorer.
Other possible contenders are Antoine Griezmann, Atletico Madrid’s star man. However, the Frenchman sometimes plays in a deeper role and is not merely an out-and-out goalscorer.
Real Madrid’s Rodrygo, Sevilla’s Youssef En Nesyri and Real Betis frontman Broja Iglesias could push for the crown.
PS: Odds might have changed since article was written