IN a brand new series at WLB, we're getting inside the minds of some of the betting industry's smartest minds by asking the experts to reveal their favourite resources, valuable insight and biggest wins in the game, with (@StatsBet) up next.
When did you first start betting? Can you remember your first bet?
Yeah, the France '98 World Cup I asked a friend to place a bet on Tore Andre Flo for First Goalscorer in the Scotland v Norway match. It lost. I learned a few months later he collected off that bet as I only wrote Flo on the slip and Havard Flo scored first.
What sports or leagues do you focus and bet on?
Football mainly with a bit of horse racing but my main bag is footy. I don’t limit myself to any league – if I can get the data I will run the numbers.
I like each-way First Goalscorer selections – there's often some cracking value to be had there, and yes it can be value under 3/1.
Newer market(s) I am looking in to is the player markets – there is such as mismatch of prices between books that you can find some good angles – they seem slow to react to positional changes on team news.
What sites or sources do you use to follow them?
Also, local news or speaking with people on Twitter in the local area, especially regarding team news or what's happening at clubs.
What stats do you consider the most important?
In my opinion, the price is the most important. In terms of, what has happened at the price.
For instance, how do odds-on favourites get on on the road in the Dutch Eredivisie…. Well, last season they won 59% of matches at average odds of 1.50.
So for simplicity over 100 matches you will win 59 of them at 1.50. Are you going to bet that? Some people would based on stats but it’s best to take these on.
Are there any stats or trends you feel are irrelevant?
Most of them.
Things like recency-bias, such as Team A have seen Over 2.5 Goals in 5/5 or 8/10 home games and Team B have seen Over 2.5 Goals in 5/5 or 8/10 Away….that type of rubbish.
If you were going to use them stats wouldn’t it be good to know what’s happened previously when that criteria has been met and is it profitable?
Team A Over 2.5 Goals in 8/10
Team B Over 2.5 Goals in 8/10
When matches meet this criteria, how many of their next games see Over 2.5 Goals and what are the odds? If you do that analysis then you might realise why it’s garbage.
What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learnt betting?
You always have to keep learning – it never stops.
Why is value important in betting?
It is the most important thing in betting. In the short term a –EV (Expected Value) value bettor can win, but in the long-term if you can’t find a team/market being undervalued then you will lose.
Look at my example in Holland – you might win a few bets backing odds-on away shots but you would lose long-term if you continually backed them.
Have you any advice for punters looking to try and find an edge?
Yes, never ever pay for the basic stats – they’re pointless and free all over the internet. The only people making money from them is the people selling them. You will not be profitable long-term using them otherwise we would all go to Soccerstats, look for the highest lines, place bets, collect, and go play golf.
If you see Twitter accounts tipping based on the above in some of the lower level leagues its a good signal to see if you can find a bit more info…..it only takes a little bit of work that they can't be bothered to do.
Also, pick a specific market or specific league/country and start to understand it, do some analysis on it over one, two or three seasons. How have the prices changed? How is the average amount of goals changing and is this reflected in the Over 2.5 prices? Same for home wins and odds.
Come up with ideas yourself and test them. Remember its other people you are betting against, not the bookmaker.
What’s your biggest betting win and how do you spend it?
I had a low four-figure Lucky 15 come up on the horses on a Saturday – it was like millionaires weekend and all was gone by Monday morning.
Do you review your bets and track your winners/losers?
Yes, record-keeping is a must. I have spreadsheets of all bets, I review/admin it all once a week. I feel doing it daily can have an effect mentally, especially after a bad day,.
How do you cope with losing bets?
Losing a bet is fine, it’s just betting. But losing runs….. That’s shite and no matter what people say you get pissed off but you just have to move on and you can’t dwell. And yes, they do happen despite what Twitter tipsters will tell you.
What’s the best thing about betting?
Betting is boring, the best part for me is the analysis, finding the niches and seeing why that is.
Some other things to add are the extra skills you can pick up, like learning Excel formulas or scraping websites doing data analysis, these things can help you in life.
Twitter betting can also be excellent, the amount of knowledge you can gain by reading various discussions on betting is immense, I have picked up loads from various accounts like @cherryanalysts, @Gubbed_, @Hudders73, @calciocassini, @jeevesodds, @Bet-on-Value, @ftsincome, @bettingmayhem and @JM5portsAnalyst – all have great knowledge across various markets.