Portuguese Primeira Liga – A Beginner’s Betting Guide

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One of the growing leagues in Europe comes in the form of the Primeira Liga. It is now ranked as the sixth-best by UEFA and plays host to some of the most exciting attacking players on the continent. Primeira Liga teams have improved in recent seasons, and the battle to top the Primeira Liga table has often made for a compelling battle. You can find out more about the history, format, and how to bet on the Portuguese top-flight here.

Primeira Liga History

The Primeira Liga has been the top flight for soccer in Portugal since 1934, making it one of the oldest domestic leagues. Before the birth of the league, and even in its early years, the most popular soccer competition in Portugal was the Championship of Portugal. The knockout competition historically crowned the champions of the country, and fans continued to refer to themselves as champions if they won this competition and not the league throughout the early seasons of the Primeira Liga.

However, after the reform, teams put extra emphasis on the league. Its first name was the Campeonato Nacional da Primeira Divisao. The first season saw Porto crowned champions, but the league was soon expanded to ten teams from the 1939-40 season. Regional championships were finally abolished from the 1946-47 season, as the Portuguese top-flight formed the figurehead of the pyramid, with the Segunda Divisao and Terceira Divisao being competed underneath.

How To Bet On Primeira Liga

While the Premier League and LaLiga may be more popular betting options for soccer fans wanting to bet on soccer online, there are still excellent opportunities when it comes to betting on the Primeira Liga. Below, you can learn more about some of the most popular betting markets available for the Portuguese top-flight.

Match Result Betting

The most popular way to bet on Primeira Liga fixtures throughout the season is in the match result market. Bettors must correctly predict the outcome of the fixture to gain returns from this market. Three options will be available to the bettors, which include both teams and the draw. If the selected option wins at the end of 90 minutes, then returns will be added to your account.


A popular wagering option when it comes to the Primeira Liga is the Scorecast market. This is typically one of the more difficult markets to get returns, as the bettor must accurately predict the player that will score first, and the eventual result in the fixture. Both factors must be correct in order to get the returns from this selection, but the odds are much higher than you will find in the correct score and first goalscorer markets.

Total Goals

When it comes to attacking talent, there are few leagues with as much talent on display as the Primeira Liga. Therefore, the total goals market is popular throughout the season. Bettors must predict whether there will be a higher or lower total number of goals in the fixture based on the benchmark given by the sportsbook. For example, if a bettor was to wager on over 3.5 goals, then there must be at least four goals in total to get returns from the selection.

Primeira Liga Teams & Format

Like every league across Europe, three points are awarded for teams that pick up wins, while a point is achieved for a draw. The team that finishes the Primeira Liga at the top of the standings is crowned champions of Portugal and earns an automatic spot in the group stages of the Champions League. Second place also achieves a place in the group stages, while the team that finishes third enters the third qualifying round. Fourth place earns a place in the Europa League, while fifth and sixth gain entry to the Europa Conference League qualifying rounds.

At the bottom of the standings, the teams that finish 18th and 17th are automatically relegated to Liga Portugal 2. Meanwhile, the team that finishes in 16th will have an opportunity to save themselves in the playoffs. At this stage, the team in that position plays against the team that finished third in Liga Portugal 2 over two legs. The team that wins on aggregate then starts the following campaign in the Portuguese top flight.

Primeira Liga Records

Throughout the history of the Primeira Liga, over 70 teams have competed in the Portuguese top flight. However, only five teams have ever been crowned champions of Portugal. The most successful club in the history of domestic competition is Benfica, who have been crowned champions on 37 occasions. Porto has won the title on 30 occasions, while Sporting Lisbon has won 19 times. Only two other teams have won the Primeira Liga, and those are Belenenses in 1946 and Boavista in 2001.

There have been some exciting Primeira Liga players throughout the history of the league. Manuel Fernandes holds the record for the most appearances in the Portuguese league, as he played on 486 occasions for teams such as Sporting Lisbon and Vitoria Setubal. The highest scorer in the history of the Portuguese games is Fernando Peyroteo. The Portuguese international scored 332 goals for Sporting Lisbon and was crowned the top scorer in eleven seasons. However, one of the most famous strikers to have played in the Primeira Liga was Eusebio, who scored 318 goals for Benfica.

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