With most punters taking a scattergun, emotionally driven approach to their betting, following certain betting systems can give you a definite advantage. Still, few systems are failproof and many have serious problems with them.
In this guide, we cover the football betting strategies that work as well as point out some of the issues to be aware of. Start implementing these ideas into your betting and you will discover more opportunities to take money out of the market.
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Research the Bookmaker
There are many top rated bookmakers around – but which is right for you? In practice, you will probably use a couple of bookmakers and at least one betting exchange fairly regularly. But don’t just stick with the one that gave you a decent sign-up offer. Consider the following criteria to identify the bookie that will help you profit most long-term:
Price One of the most important factors. If bookmaker A is offering 2.1 on your match and bookmaker B is offering 2.2, generally you want to bet with bookie B. Look for sites that have consistently good prices. You can look on odds comparison sites to find out this information. Remember that betting exchanges like Betfair charge a commission on winnings, effectively reducing the odds you’re getting.
Reliability Obviously you’re not going to trust your money with a bookie you’ve never heard of. But the question of reliability goes beyond just reputation. Is the betting platform stable or will it crash mid-game, jeopardising your in-play bets? Does the company have a reputation of limiting successful accounts?
Extra features If you plan on betting on football in-play, you might want a bookmaker that offers live streaming and a cash-out button. The convenience of being able to take your winnings early might be worth slightly lower odds.
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Bankroll Management in Football Betting
Bankroll management is often overlooked by sports bettors. Most punters focus on finding value or high-likelihood events, and choose their bet size depending on their confidence, greed or habits. Bankroll management is an entire discipline in itself and will greatly reward you if you pay it due attention. A good money management system will keep you from going bust and help maximise your profits.
There are different ways to approach bankroll management and we’ll discuss a few below. Your first aim, however, should be to stay in the game. Staking 10% of your bank on each bet is a near-guaranteed way to lose all your money. Speaking of which, make sure you know what your “bank” is. It’s not all the money in your bank account. It’s a pre-determined amount of money that you’ve decided to bet with. Money you can afford to lose but aim to grow.
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Understanding Staking Systems
Many football betting systems are based on the amount of money staked, rather than picking particular matches. It’s important to point out that for betting strategies to work, you need to combine good value bets with sensible money management strategies.
With that caveat, these are some of the most well-known staking systems used in football betting:
- Flat Betting - Also known as level betting, this simple approach involves placing the same amount, say £5, on every bet.
- Percentage Betting - Similar to flat betting but this involves betting the same percentage, say 2%, of your bank on each bet. This speeds up your gains on a winning run and slows down your losses on a losing run. Still, notice that a win followed by a loss (and even a loss followed by a win), leaves you with slightly less than you started with.
- Martingale - In theory, this system guarantees profit. In practice, it guarantees financial ruin! The idea is to bet on an outcome with odds of at least 2.0. If it wins, stick with the same stake on your next bet. If it loses, double your stake for the next bet. If that loses, double our stake again. When you get a win, it will pay off all your losses and give you a small profit. Still, it doesn’t take many losses before you’re having to risk large amounts of money.
- Fibonacci - Like the Martingale but instead of doubling your stake, in Fibonacci you multiply it by the next number in the series (1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21…). So, if your £10 bet loses, you bet £20, then £30, then £50. When you get a win, you move 2 places down the series. If your £50 bet won, your next bet would be £20.
- Reverse Martingale (Anti-Martingale). This is the safer alternative to a regular Martingale. It doubles the stake on wins instead of losses.
- Labouchere. A more complicated system that involves betting the sum of the first and last numbers in a series. Taking the series “1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6”, your first bet would be 7 (1+6) x your base stake, say £5 = £35. If you win, you cross 1 and 6 out and use 2 and 5 next. If the bet loses, you add the sum of the numbers, 7, to the end of the sequence.
- Reverse Labouchere -In this version, you add a number to the end of the series if you win and cross numbers out if you lose. It leads to a high number of smaller losses while giving the chance of big wins.
- Kelly Criterion - Discovered by John Larry Kelly Jr., a scientist, this staking system is mathematically certain to produce the best returns. It does, however, require the true odds of an outcome to be known, something that can be approximated but rarely known exactly in sports betting.
- D’Alambert - A more conservative strategy that involves increasing your stake by 1 unit after a loss and decreasing it by 1 after a win.
- Paroli - A relatively safe system where you add 1 unit to your stake after a win but immediately revert to your original stake after a loss.
- 1-3-2-6 System - Bet 1 unit, if you win, bet 3 units on the next event. If it wins, bet 2 units on the next event, and so on. If you lose at any stage, or get to the end of the series, you start over.
Other Football Betting Strategies
There are other betting strategies that work, too. The following football betting strategies are dependent on certain conditions but can be profitable when they occur.
- Arbitrage betting - Popularly known as ‘arbing’, this strategy involves taking advantage of different prices being offered on the same event to guarantee profit.
- Betting against the public - When emotions push prices too far in one direction, the shrewd punter can make big money.
- Poisson distribution - A mathematical approach to assessing the likely scores and results of football games.
Use Your Team of Experts
The quality of your research can make the difference between big profits or a losing year. Find quality resources you can trust and you other people’s insights and information to balance your own.
Sports newsThis is the least a sportsbook can do, and if they offer above-average odds, they certainly get bonus points for that.
Social networks There is only one thing better than having what you need: having plenty of choices on top of it. The more markets a sportsbook has, the better the experience.
Reddit Reddit’s football channel packs almost 100K members and there is some quality insight to be gained. You’ll have to learn to distinguish between the experts and the merely opinionated but it’s a good place to get ideas.
Tipster Tipsters claim to be able to pick value bets and some charge for sharing their discoveries. Keep records of their predictions and profitability. While most fail to deliver long-term profits, there are some who are well worth following.
Frequently Asked Questions
⚽Q: What Is the Best Strategy for Football Betting?
💬A: The best football betting strategy is to find value bets and use a sensible money management system to maximise profit in the long-term. If you’re looking for a simple betting system, then take advantage of sportsbook free bet promotions. By using matched betting principles, you can guarantee profit from these free bets, whatever the result of the match.
⏱️Q: Is There a Betting Strategy That Reduces Risk?
💬A: Yes. The simplest strategy for reducing risk in your football betting is to cash out when your bet is in profit. When you do this is up to you. It might be half-time or at the 70-minute mark. Just stay consistent with the timing. Trading out of bets that look like they will lose will also save you money long-term.
💸Q: What Is the Best Football Betting Strategy to Make Money?
💬A: If you can consistently find value bets and employ a sensible money management strategy, you will make money. Look at staking systems like the Kelly Criterion for ways to maximise your profits
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