Betting School

How to find value in sports betting

Do odds matter in betting? Obviously they do, it goes without saying. One the most common mistake a rookie bettor will do is bet without considering if the offered lines are fair or not. They just create their betslips purely based on their intuition about the result. In this guide we will try to explain everything about Value Bets and why they are important in betting. We will offer a value bet definition and define what are the best bets for value. We will analyse what football value bets actually are and how you can identify them. If you feel like skipping a step you can find value bets on our daily football betting predictions or you can learn how to find them yourself by continuing below.

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Value betting explained

Not knowing what value betting is, is probably the main reason why punters lose money in the long term. Maybe the best way to make this clear is with an example. Let’s say that in the West London derby Chelsea are hosting Arsenal. Judging by the previous meetings, home advantage, the current form, possible injuries and the standing of the two rivals on the league table, the bookmakers think that the Blues are a clear favourite to win this clash. No surprise that they offer the home win at odds around 1.50. Lots of bettors will buy that price believing that the predictions will come true and Chelsea will triumph. They might. But the final result has little to no value. How do we know this? Let’s see how finding value bets is done.

How do I calculate my bet value

In order to be a successful punter you need to have a keen eye for opportunity and value and grab them when the time is right. Here is a simple mathematical type to identify value bets. In our previous example Chelsea was offered to win is at odds 1.50, the Gunners to win at 6.00 and the Draw at 4.33. Let’s see if the odds for a home win are a valuebetThe calculation goes like this: Value= (Probability * odds) -1. If the value is greater than 0, then you have a value bet. So if we think that Chelsea has a 60% probability to win we come up with (0.60 * 1.50)-1= -0.1. So there is no value bet in this case. If the odds are 1.70 or greater then the odds would have been valued. So we’ll pass this one and keep on seeking value in other matches. 

What does EV mean in sports betting

As fans we experience many situations where match results are way beyond any logic. Sports betting value bets is another thing of course. In these cases you need to be sure on where you are about to stake your money. Expected Value betting can be of some assistance to that. But what is the Expected Value that defines your betting style in that manner? Like we mentioned above a value bet is a wager where the expected probability surpasses the implied probability (a positive value like we said in the previous paragraph). Remember that we are talking about winning in the long term and not just a bet. So if you are betting in positive EV bets then at the end of the season you will always be a winner.

Finding value bets

Experienced bettors will say that in order to find value bets you need to specialize in teams, leagues etc and sports of course. So when you feel like you know a lot more about the teams, you will be able to calculate the most important factor of the value bet equation. Implied probability. If you can accurately calculate the probability then it is really easy to find the best value bet of the day. Just when you think you have gained the needed experience in a specific league you can expand your game in other leagues or teams. Finding the value in sports betting is essential if you want to move from being a rookie to a professional punter.

Expected value betting strategy

Since you learned what is a value bet and how to find it, it’s now time for action. Naturally, you might think that you need a strategy for that or sophisticated software. You don’t need some fancy value betting software or strategy.  Simple research and patience and perhaps a site where you can see the change of odds. Remember that you should act like a sniper. Focus and wait until the right time. Just when you think the odds are right, shoot. Just be patient and you will get your kill.

In play value bets

Don’t force a bet just because you are watching the match or had something in mind before the match started. And for any reason don’t let yourself get carried away. Of course, that’s the golden rule of sports betting and does not only apply in value bets. It is a lot harder to find a value bet on live betting considering that bookmakers usually apply a higher commission to in-play odds. So how to place a value live bet? The first step – as in any other betting strategy – is to carefully examine every possible aspect of the match you are about to bet. So you will be ready to face any scenario. Then as the minutes are passing by, simply check if everything aligns according to plan. If they do, don’t commit yourself. You are just like a sniper waiting for movement. If, say, the underdog is winning during the second half, this could be an alert for you. The favourite team normally will increase the pressure.

Forget for a second the final result and focus on other markets. For example, the next team to score. If the underdog is constantly counter-attacking, then backing them for the next goal is surely a value bet. Value bets can be found also in corners, yellow cards or even in penalty kicks. Judging from the way they play, you can find a pick that will increase your bankroll. Αν οver 1.5 value bet is another option many bettors take. That is goals of course, in one half time. It is rather easy. If you have access to a trustworthy stats site then simply examine the time when the two opponents usually score. Then place your money in the most likely half and wait to be paid.

Account restrictions from value betting

If you are trying to beat the bookies by being a smart punter, then account restrictions is one of the main hazards. That doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to put up with it or not take some measures to prevent that. First of all, you can choose a bookmaker that is value betting and arbitrage tolerant. Such as Pinnacle or SBObet. Just open an account there and you will never have to worry about limits or bans. Alternatively or even additionally you can have an account on a betting exchange with Betfair being the obvious choice. For those of you who aren’t willing to join an additional bookmaker, there are some tricks that will help you retain an account with no limits. For example, don’t make a withdrawal immediately after a big win. Usually, they check your last bets before proceeding the withdrawal. So you don’t want to show up on their radar. 

After winning some money try to lose some poorly placed bets in order to confuse the bookmaker. Bet on one or two 5-leg accumulators. In the same manner change your betting pattern – that is if you have one. In general, show them that you are an ordinary bettor with no clue about value bets or something like that. Last tip, don’t bet on small competitions or suspicious leagues. Bookmakers are always alert with punters that are keen on betting on those leagues. So if they see you betting on value bets and those leagues, then they will eventually limit your account.

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