The odds are a very popular way to look at football betting. People love them because they are generally easy to understand and they provide a clear indication of the betting market at any one time. However, people must remember that odds are only relevant when they are applied to relevant events. This article is going to briefly discuss some of the basic principles of reading football odds and how to apply them so that you can get the most out of reading football betting odds!
What Is The Purpose Of The Odds?
The odds are there to help people make better-informed decisions as to whether or not to bet on sporting events, place big or small stakes on these events, and how much they should wager. In general, the chances of something happening are represented by oddsmakers, while the possible rewards or payouts for that event are represented by the evens. When you look at it this way, it makes perfect sense why people would be interested in reading the odds, as they provide an excellent guide as to what is happening and what the chances of something good happening are. It is also the perfect balance between gambling and sports. If you want to bet on sports, then the odds are the best place to start because they provide the best available information regarding the likelihood of something good happening. Remember, you can only apply odds when they are relevant to the event you are betting on!
How To Read Football Odds
When you are reading football odds, you are usually provided with key information such as the team’s or player’s name, the score of the game or match, the total number of points scored, etc. In addition, you are usually given the home team’s odds, the visitors’ odds, and the betting line, which is simply the price you have to pay to make a bet. The home team’s odds are generally referred to as “minus the scores”, while the visitors’ odds are referred to as “+the scores”. For instance, if Arsenal are 2.5 goals ahead of Newcastle at half-time in a Premier League match, you would have the following:
- Arsenal (-2.5) (Home team) (45 minutes): At 45 minutes into the match, Arsenal are 2.5 goals ahead of Newcastle. This means that they would have to score at least 2.5 goals in the remaining time to ensure that they keep the 2.5 point lead. Conversely, if Newcastle score 2.5 goals in the second half, the match would be over and Arsenal would lose by 2.5 points.
- Newcastle (+2.5) (Visitor team) (45 minutes): At 45 minutes into the match, Newcastle are 2.5 goals behind Arsenal. This means that they would have to score at least 2.5 goals in the remaining time to narrow the deficit. Conversely, if Arsenal score 2.5 goals in the second half, the match would be over and Newcastle would win by 2.5 points.
- Line: (Betting line): The betting line is simply the price you have to pay to win or place a bet on the game. In the example above, the betting line is 2.5. This means that if you want to bet on Arsenal to win the match, then you have to wager 2.5 on each of the 12 available bets (i.e. Arsenal to win by 2, 1.66, 1, 1.33, 1.12, 0.9, 0.66, 0.5, 0.33, 0.2, or 0 goals).
Falling Vs. Rising Odds
Generally, when something bad happens, the odds will decrease in favor of the underdog, while the odds increase in favor of the favorite. For example, take a look at the 2016 NFL Draft. The Cleveland Browns were heavy underdogs to start the draft process, with the odds of them selecting a quarterback at 1/128 (1 in 128). However, as the draft went on and the Browns kept on picking quarterbacks, the odds decreased significantly, eventually settling at 1/32 (1 in 32), which is still extremely high. But for the most part, oddsmakers will always lean towards the underdogs because they provide the highest betting yield.
How To Applying The Odds
It is important to remember that the odds are only relevant when they are applied to a relevant event, as mentioned above. For example, if you wanted to bet on the Cleveland Browns to win the 2016 NFL Draft, you would have to do so at the NFL Draft. However, if you wanted to bet on the Miami Hurricanes to win the 2017 NCAA Football Championship, you would have to look towards the end of the season because the 2017 NFL Season is over at the time of the 2017 NCAA Football Championship.
As a general rule of thumb, underdogs generally provide the highest betting yield, which is why oddsmakers favor them, while favorites generally provide the least amount of betting yield, which is why they are not as attractive of an investment as the underdog. But it really comes down to how much are you willing to wager!
Basic Football Odds
There are several different types of football odds, with the most basic being the straight up odds, which is when both teams are evenly matched. For example, take a look at the 2007 Asia Cup, which was the most recent cup final to date. It was a highly-anticipated match between South Korea and Japan, with many tipping the outcome in favor of South Korea. The game ended in a tie, so the teams decided to play a penalty shootout to determine a winner. But before the shootout could commence, the odds on Japan to win the cup were at 54/100 (1/2) and on South Korea to win were at 51/100 (1/2). This meant that betting shops had to put up 54/100 on Japan to win and take home the cup and 51/100 (1/2) on South Korea to win. But in the end, Japan triumphed 4-2 on penalties, earning them the right to represent Asia at the 2008 Olympics. This type of match is commonly referred to as a ‘dog fight’.
The Moneyline odds are the simplest to understand, as they provide you with the opportunity to bet on either team to win the match, with the odds meaning what they say. In the example above, the betting line is 2.5 and it offers you the opportunity to lay a wager on either team to win the match, with the winner being determined by who scores the most goals. Therefore, if you are a fan of the Arsenal and you wanted to lay a wager on them to win the match, you would have the following options:
- Arsenals to win (Away team) (2.5) (20 minutes): At 20 minutes into the match, Arsenal are 2.5 goals ahead of Newcastle. This means that they would have to score at least 2.5 goals in the remaining time to ensure that they win the match. Conversely, if Newcastle score 2.5 goals in the second half, the match would be over and Arsenal would win by 2.5 points.
- Newcastle to win (Home team) (2.5) (20 minutes): At 20 minutes into the match, Newcastle are 2.5 goals behind Arsenal. This means that they would have to score at least 2.5 goals in the remaining time to narrow the deficit. Conversely, if Arsenal score 2.5 goals in the second half, the match would be over and Newcastle would win by 2.5 points.
- Draw (1) (Home team) (+0.5), (Away team) (+0.5) (20 minutes): At 20 minutes into the match, it is a draw, with no team having won the match. This means that both teams would have to score at least one goal in the remaining time to determine a winner. However, if both teams draw on equal amounts, then the tie would be decided by a penalty shootout, as in the above example.
As you can see, the Moneyline odds give you a clear indication of how the betting market is going to unfold. If you are a fan of one team, then you would typically lay bets on them because they are going to be the most profitable team to wager on, assuming that you are correct.