General Betting

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07 Sep 12 12:26
Date Joined: 12 Jan 02
| Topic/replies: 15,132 | Blogger: stu's blog
An interesting question for you footy analysts:

(Copied from football forum, as know there are a lot of analysts on this forum):

Which is more crucial in determining results on football markets

a) The average previous results across a large sample of different teams.
b) The averages that relate solely to that/those specific team/manager(s).

A tricky, but crucial, question. I think a lot assume a) but is it true?

(When I say averages, that could also mean other statistics/analysis.)
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Report kenilworth September 7, 2012 5:55 PM BST
stu, could you give an example of
what you mean ?
Report stu September 7, 2012 6:02 PM BST
Ok, lets say for example you want to play corners markets (whether spread or fixed odds).
So you need your analysis for individual matches to give you an estimate of total corners for each game and related market.

Will you get better estimates by analysing large datasets for corners (with many different teams) or by closely analysing the teams playing in that specific match? That's the question.

Obviously, the catch is that the second way means a smaller set of data to deal with, but on the flipside is more closely related to the actual teams/market you are judging.
Report stu September 7, 2012 6:02 PM BST
Should add, analysing the teams and managers specifically.
Report kenilworth September 7, 2012 6:50 PM BST
stu, are you saying (corners) the average for say,
that of a whole league OR the average for individual
teams ? If that is the question, I would say a bit of
Report stu September 7, 2012 6:55 PM BST
Yes, course then can be a bit of synthesis, but question is how much you weight both.

Just to add, when I say averages of course there are other ways to analyse (e.g. manager's approach to matches). So it isn't all just averages. The tricky part is how to combine that with other (broader) stats measures.

A further question is how wide to cast the net for your 'general' stats.
Report marky sparky September 7, 2012 8:31 PM BST
large sample of different teams
Report kenilworth September 7, 2012 10:20 PM BST
When I estimate corners I calculate 60% the league
average + 40% the tams average. For example if the
league average is 11.0 and the teams average 9.0 I
go (11*.6)+(9*.4) = 10.2. It's quite painstaking
so now I only do it on tv matches, but usually find my
finds are in line with the market!
Report stu September 8, 2012 12:52 AM BST
Ken - any reason for the 60/40 split?

Marky - respect the view, but whats the reasoning for that?
Report kenilworth September 8, 2012 9:00 AM BST
I have to admit it was suggested by KP in
the Racing Post 4 or 5 years ago.
Report stu September 8, 2012 9:14 AM BST
Interesting - guess the reasoning is the idea that more general stats are slightly more reliable in the long run, so deserve a greater weighting. Personally (and why I posted this) my own thinking is that in different markets that might be wrong. But, of course, it's a never-ending debate based on future results.
Report stu September 10, 2012 1:28 PM BST
Any other analysts got a view on this problem?
Report omega1 September 10, 2012 10:45 PM BST
How many matches are considering on both sides Ken?
Report inner city sumo September 11, 2012 8:10 PM BST
"The genetic differences between any two races of humans is smaller than the differences and variability within just one race."

100% just the two teams in my analyses. I'd rather try and piece together something from a small sample of highly relevant information than incorporate extraneous noise. If I can't solve the puzzle, no problem, find something else to bet on. I suspect if you asked 100 users of this site though, you'll get 100 different approaches/philosophies.
Report DaveEdwards September 11, 2012 8:40 PM BST
Always a danger with averaging.

Put a mans head in ice & his feet in scolding water. On average he ought to feel ok.
Report stu September 11, 2012 10:57 PM BST
You sound like you two are thinking like me, when it comes to analysis. The other problem with averaging is that it is too easy - anyone can work out averages.
Report stu September 11, 2012 10:59 PM BST
inner city sumo - I often feel like this is my approach. It makes more sense to me, as I am not betting on every match, but just this match, with these teams. The trick is how to know them though, in a way that is reliable (and that sounds like averaging)....
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR September 11, 2012 11:18 PM BST
It would seem to me that if you are looking at averages of all teams then you will not really ever find a decent edge, as this body of statistics has been looked at in depth by analysts.
However if you can individualize your analysis by adding in some very subjective views relating to individual team match ups (  for example, you mentioned earlier certain playing strategies favoured by certain managers for certain matches ) than hopefully you can find an edge that not many others have come up with.
After all, you have to go against the consensus really to win in the long term.
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR September 11, 2012 11:26 PM BST
Averages appeal to the average man.
Report kenilworth September 11, 2012 11:29 PM BST
go against the consensus to win in the long term ? Do you mean
opposing the market moves that seem to have no logic perhaps ?
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR September 11, 2012 11:37 PM BST
I gave up applying logic to my sports betting a long time ago.
In fact I would go so far as to say that now the more uncomfortable I feel with a bet, the more I get a good result.
Imo the consensus view is pretty much the conventional view and as such has been pretty perfectly priced on an average basis in the long run. And it is averages that are being discussed on here.
Being an ex bookie K, can you tell us whether you have won or lost more on favourites ( in any sport) over the years ?
Report inner city sumo September 11, 2012 11:45 PM BST
I don't think averaging of your two teams is necessarily a bad thing. It's the use of averages in which your two teams are only contributing to just under 20% of the total matches played that I personally don't use, i.e. broad league/divisional data. I'm sure others do successfully incorporate such information, but if we take the corners example, ensuring both teams are playing first choice wingers in the starting line ups may be more significant in your assessment of what's going to happen, real specific information.

In some respects the issue is reminiscent of the debate in social sciences of whether quantitative or qualitative data is 'best'. The reality is both are highly valuable, and the extent to which you can capitalise on both hard numerical data (any averages or statistics you may derive for your two teams) and those intangibles like line ups, weather, context of the game in the overall season, the closer you should get to a decent judgement.
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR September 11, 2012 11:59 PM BST
Very well put inner city.
Report c0rbchenk0 September 12, 2012 7:22 AM BST
I think you have the right formula if it equates to the same price as Betfair is offering, true odds.

Statistics wont help you beat the market, you need other vital information which will push the result past the true odds, maybe weather, injuries, one team playing negative football etc
Report Stow_judge September 12, 2012 11:05 AM BST
wrt corners, a mate of mine suggested a significant factor was team formation. He suggested that flat back fours led to less corners and wing backs led to more corners.
Report kenilworth September 13, 2012 1:27 PM BST
FAFH, re my bookmaker experiences with favourites, on course
I was a bit contrary and at times didn't lay the favourite,
forming an opinion most of the time. Many books stuck to the
'rules' that being the favourite a loser, next two in the
betting 'takers' the others as winners (for the book), pulling
the favourite too much IMO. At times I had a very lopsided
book having the favourite as a skinner, with several losers,
sometimes taking hardly any money, everyone wanting the jolly.
I had the betting office attitude, that was just letting the
punters decide what was my winner. Opposing the favourite usually
meant going over the odds and I didn't see any future in that.
In answer to your question I think I did ok on the favourites.
I had
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