How to identify value in your bets? That’s the big question. My friend, Alex Napier, coined the phrase “the bookmakers game” when he outlined a method of identifying value in soccer betting. By exploring the nature of value, we can define the best bet soccer value. In this article, we’ll define odds percentages and some pitfalls of trying to identify value.
The odds on offer at any given time are about areas. This simply speaks to the percentage of shots, or goals, that will be taken on the betting day. It is expressed as a ratio and is the ratio of the number of shots on the one betting day to the total number of shots made on the calendar sports year.
For example, one odds comparison may involve Arsenal v Derby County. We’ll use the same Gunners featuring a first goal in the 1st minute. If you accept this, you will have to settle for an Arsenal win on the odds displayed if you wish to bet against Derby County.
Now, the trouble in this particular example is that Arsenal have an away relation in the game. They’ve lost their last two away matches; the last of which was a one-sided 6-0 thrashing at the hands of Manchester City. Arsenal have not what it takes to beat a Championship side at home and are not considered to be amongst the top Premier League teams of the moment. Thus, the odds on offer are virtually even.
Besides this, the armory percentage the bookmakers used are not typical of those used in any other major team sports. Thus, giving the bookmakers a considerable advantage.
Of the top Premier League teams, only Manchester United have managed to score as many as 20 goals this season. Chelsea and Tottenham have each scored between 13 and 16 goals, with Arsenal close behind in the betting odds.
Even in the case of Arsenal, the statistics from the last few years are not so impressive. In the 2008-2009 Premier League season, Arsenal won the second division with 75 points, the last of the three teams to go down. In the same season, Arsenal reached the FA Cup Final, but were defeated by Chelsea after a 1-0 defeat.
The Gunners have won the last three of the competitions, but have never reached the FA Cup. Chelsea have been impressive in the league, but never able to stay there. Spurs have reached the FA Cup semi-final twice, only to be knocked out by both Manchester United and Chelsea, the same being the case in 2005. Chelsea have won silverware on a frequent basis in recent years and are thus capable of threat in the league. On the other hand, Arsenal have never won a League title and Spurs have never achieved a repeat in the FA Cup.
This example shows that it is not so easy to maintain a high level of consistency in the league. Blanking the flaws of the league is the way to go. Arsenal have the potential to be great in the league, if only they could protect the core of their team. Manchester United, on the other hand, are the team everyone want to play with. Ferguson proved that in the league, as he took the top team in the league table to win the double, only to be knocked out by both Chelsea and Manchester United in the Panen138.
Staying away from these teams when they are not ready is a smart move. Staying in with them when they are ready is a bet to lose. Arsenal’s game against Liverpool, a team they haven’t met for some time, is a good test. Although Arsenal are not at their best, this game played out exactly how you would expect them to play, which is not very well.
Staying in for the game at 13/10, as far as bookmakers are concerned, is a bet that has the ‘home-team advantage’. In this case, making a profit would be assured from a home win. Still, a few draws aren’t going to hurt either one of these teams. meltdown could be expected when Arsenal play Chelsea, and I expect goals from amongst the thirty-two players at the Arsenal stadium.
In the case of Manchester United, everything is pretty much taken care of. Blindly by their own admission, Manchester United can’t win the league. Still, for once in quite a while, you’d expect them to fight it out with Chelsea for the title. Carling and Motlow can’t do it, nor can any of the other managers. United, with all its qualities, is the odds in front when it comes to being the top club in England.
Now that the two clubs are No. 1 and No. 2, the pressure will be on to stay in the same place for the rest of the season.