Most people who enjoy sports betting would agree that the thrill of placing a bet on a game they are interested in is almost impossible to match. After all, the alternative is usually boring financial affairs, and maybe a bit of bad luck. But while there is certainly a lot of fun to be had from betting on sports, the downside is also very real. If you are looking for a way to lower your bets without taking the fun out of the experience, then it might be time to consider other options.
Consider The Spread
One of the appealing aspects of sports betting is the ability to make a reasonable guess at the outcome of a game. The bookies usually offer very good odds, so you have a fighting chance of winning small or large sums of money. But while this may be true occasionally, it is certainly not the norm.
Sportsbooks post the odds for each team and sometimes for individual players too, so you can get an idea of how much value you should place on any given outcome. For example, if you are betting on the Reds to beat the Boston Red Sox in the playoffs, then you know that the first game is going to be very hard to judge. The Reds could easily lose the game and the bookmakers might not offer very good value for a Red Sox win.
Look At The Over/Under
As the name would suggest, the over/under is simply the total amount of goals that will be scored by either team during the course of a game. For example, a soccer game could have a first-goal over/under (FOU), a goalless draw (GOAL) or a total of under 10 goals (under10).
These are very simple bets to understand, but also very popular ones in the UK. The reason behind this is that both teams have an equal chance of winning as the over/under is determined by the total amount of goals scored, regardless of who actually scores them. Plus, for a neutral party, it is easy to watch a game and place a bet on the outcome without worrying about too much strategy or being swayed by either coaches’ tactics.
To give you an idea of how much one team will score over or under the other, we have put together a list of the top 20 over/under bets for the Premier League (UK), using bet365’s odds calculator. Bear in mind that these are for entertainment purposes only and should not be construed as financial advice or endorsed in any way.
Checking The History Of The Game
One of the things that make sports betting so appealing is that it is relatively easy to check the historical data. This is often done by comparing the spreads for previous games between the same two teams. If there is a trend developing then this can be used to determine the over/under for the current game. If you have been following suit and betting on the trend, then this can definitely boost your returns. For example, if you are backing Manchester United to score over 3 goals in a game, and the favourite score is 2.5 goals, then it is safe to assume that the underdogs will manage to score at least 2.5 goals as well and you will win your bet.
However, this should not be confused with simply looking at the data for similar games. For example, while comparing the data for previous Manchester United v Manchester City games may give you an indication of how the game could go, comparing the stats for a Liverpool v Man City game may give you a totally different picture. The context is extremely important, and you should never rely solely on historical data.
Placing Sizeable Bets
The other appealing aspect of sports betting is the ability to place sizeable bets. The UK market is mostly concentrated on the over/under, with the exception of the World Cup which sees a lot of people betting on the actual scores of the games. But while the ability to make large bets is very exciting, it also has its downsides. If you place a large bet you are going to be required to disclose your financial status to the bookmakers, meaning that you may be open to identity theft, since all the odds are usually posted on the internet and any hacker with a basic knowledge of computers can access your personal details. Simply put, if you do not want to become a victim of crime then avoid placing large bets and stick to the smaller ones.
Watch The Game And Bet On The Results
One of the things that make sports betting so appealing is that it is relatively easy to place a bet on the result of a game. This is often done by looking at the line in the sportsbook and either backing the winner or not depending on whether they are a favourite or an underdog. If you are following suit and betting on the result then this can definitely boost your returns. But watching the game and placing a bet on the results can be very time-consuming, especially if you are not familiar with all the players’ or coaches’ names. It is therefore preferable to have an edge in predicting the outcome by using various statistical techniques, as discussed above.
Avoid Going Against The Trend
A very important aspect of any game is its trend. This is especially relevant in sports, where if you look at the last 10 games between two teams, then you will see a clear trend developing. For example, over the past 10 games between Liverpool and Man City, Liverpool has managed to score on average 1.75 goals while Man City has managed to score 1.45 goals. If you are going against the trend, then this is usually a bad idea since eventually the other team will hit a run of good form and the tables will turn. You do not want to get on the wrong side of the trend as it may be difficult to recover from its momentum once it has gained pace.
The above are some of the things you should keep in mind before placing a bet on sports. If you are looking for ways to lower your bets without taking the fun out of the experience then consider the above. Of course, it is always possible that a fluke may happen and an upset may occur, but for the most part, the above will lead you to success in the long term. Good luck!