Reading and understanding football odds

For people who like to gamble on football games, 'beating the odds' is much more than just a simple phrase. For these people, it is all about making money off of their football knowledge. It is a great feeling being able to take your knowledge of the beautiful game and predict which team will win. It is a whole different story when you can take this knowledge and use it to your advantage to make winning bets and profit from them. True bettors realise the maths that goes behind odds and how to use this special knowledge of theirs to locate the best places for investing their money.

For beginner Premier League odds bettors, it can be a bit confusing learning how the odds work and all the sets of numbers you will be dealing with. If you are just getting started in the world of betting on sports, it is very important that you learn how the odds work so you can enjoy a profitable betting experience.

Common types of betting odds

There are basically four different forms of regular Vegas sports odds that you will come across either online or in person at each sportsbook. These are typically what you will see immediately and are the ones that matter the most while betting on football (soccer).

1. Match Odds

This is a recommended and straight forward market.  You just pick 'Draw', 'Home Win' or 'Away Win'. While in a betting shop filling out a coupon, you would mark '1' when choosing a home win, 'x' for draw and '2' for an away win. There is a 5 to 12% built in profit margin for most popular bookmakers.

2. Goals

There are a variety of markets for goals.  A good example are the over/under 2.5 goals. People who are new to football (soccer) betting tend to get a little confused since there is no 'half a goal'.  To put it simply, you need 3 goals to win if you back over and no more than 2 goals if you back under. There is typically a 6 to 8% profit margin on these bets, like many other markets with only two outcomes.

3. Correct Score

This is another one that is fairly self-explanatory.  You need to keep in mind, however, that this one is a 90 minutes market only.  You lose the bet if it is 0-0 after the 90 minutes and you back a team looking to win 1-0 in a cup game. This is still true even if they make it to 1-0 in extra time.  Although score markets are known to throw up value on occasion, bookies typically enjoy hefty profit margins with this one.

4. Half Time Result (Half Time/Full Time)

This is a fairly tricky market to predict, however, from time to time, trends do emerge that make it a worthwhile bet. For instance, teams that don't score many goals or concede could be drawing many games during half time. If this particular market is not compiled manually by bookies since they tend to use computer programs instead, there might be a little bit of value emerging. In this market, odds are more in the favour of the bookies.

Although there are many other types of markets available, these tend to be some of the most common. Learning how to effectively read betting odds in various formats can help you avoid errors due to ignorance and become a better sports investor.

Posted by Natter Football

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