Leicester City championship costs big England sportsbooks $11.4 million

LEICESTER, England -- Leicester City, a 5,000-to-1 preseason long shot, won the Premier League on Monday night when second-place Tottenham and Chelsea played to a 2-2 draw.

Officials with three of the largest bookmakers in England told ESPN they collectively will lose $11.4 million (£7.7 million) as a result.

Leicester City's title odds were 119 times more unlikely than those of Buster Douglas beating Mike Tyson in 1991 (42-1) and five times more unlikely than those of the U.S. hockey team beating the Russians with the "Miracle on Ice" and going on to win gold at the 1980 Olympics.

Ladbrokes officials said the 130-year-old betting company took 47 bets on the Foxes up until September, when the team's winning ways changed their odds to 1,500-to-1. Ladbrokes will lose $6.6 million, and that's after settling 24 of the 47 bets at cheaper payouts.

In early March, Ladbrokes successfully paid off some of its biggest liabilities. Their largest bet, $72, gave the bettor $106,000. They paid off another bettor who made a $30 bet with $42,570.

In the end, the two settlements saved the company more than $360,000. But 23 customers let it ride, including a 20-year-old woman named Karishma Kapoor, whose $3 bet will net $14,600.

William Hill officials tallied their losses at around $3.2 million. They had only 25 bets at 5,000-to-1 but still aggressively sought to make settlements until the last minute.

In a promotional move, Fred Done, owner of BetFred, declared Leicester City bettors winners on April 3 and paid out $1.6 million in winnings.

Leicester's win results in the worst loss for the sportsbooks in Premier League futures book history, as the volume of title bets on the favorites -- namely Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsenal -- isn't enough to cover the losses on the Foxes. Prior to Leicester's title this season, those four teams had been the only winners of the Premier League for the past 20 years.

The sportsbooks did make some money back off Leicester's success and the misfortune of the most heavily bet teams, namely in early season betting.

Ladbrokes officials say they will offer 5000-to-1 odds again when a long shot surfaces, but Leicester City has changed their thinking in one way. They say will never again offer 5000-to-1 odds on a soccer team to win a title.

Ladbrokes said it is the the longest odds on a single event to ever pay off, though longer odds have been paid off on called cumulative events. In 1996, a bettor named Darren Yates won more than $800,000 on a $32 bet that the seven horses that jockey Frankie Dettori rode at Ascot would prevail.