Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Semi-Final - Germany v Spain

The Netherlands beat Uruguay but with too many goals to make it a perfect day, and UEFA gets to win its first World Cup outside of Europe.

It sounds redundant to say that any World Cup semi-final should be a great game, but we've had some in the past that haven't exactly set the pulse racing: Germany v South Korea and Brazil v Turkey from 2002 spring to mind. However, a repeat of the 2008 Euro Final with no strong favourite has a lot of promise.

The Elo ratings have Spain on top, but whereas Spain are exactly where they were when the tournament started, Germany is a lot higher and there's not too much between them now. Germany's wins over England and Argentina were, from an Elo perspective, better than Spain's wins over Paraguay and Portugal.

Historically goals are at a premium in World Cup semi-finals with 77% finishing under 2.5, and this will be my main bet. There is a little value in the draw at 3.45, but someone has to play the Netherlands on Sunday, and I'm picking Germany to qualify at 2.06. The half-time 0-0 also looks value at 2.72. At least one semi-final since 1986 has been scoreless at half-time, and Spain have been 0-0 in their last two matches. Yes, it's a small sample, but a small bet to add a little interest.

My tip of Netherlands pre-tournament at 10.0 is looking tasty right now, and my interest in taking Elo ratings more seriously at the international level has been piqued. I was looking at the Euro qualifiers yesterday - they start in just two months!


Jason Trost said...

Have a look at the odds on Smarkets, a bit better than Betfair. Draw is 3.46 and Germany to qualify is 2.1.

Mark Iverson said...

Disappointed to have to say it Jason but that Smarkets page is all over the place. Is that the betting interface?

A good idea in principle but not sure it's the right layout for your target market.

Hope I'm wrong. but there maybe others like myself that might find it a bit too 'busy'.

Good luck anyway.


Jason Trost said...

We're always making improvements. What would you change to make it less busy?