Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Juve, And Up She Rises

Anyone else see John Terry?
I needed one of my two UEFA Champions League predictions to win for an overall profit, and came within a whisker of getting both last night.

Arsenal came from behind to beat Montpellier while Real Madrid had several chances to score first against Manchester City before conceding the lead and the 1.66 lay could have been backed back at 7 immediately, or as high as 9 before Real Madrid equalised. When City took a late 2-1 lead, Real Madrid traded at 100 (actually 150 for pennies) before scoring twice to win in dramatic fashion.

The two English teams from these games meet in Manchester on Sunday, and it will be interesting to see how they react to their European adventures. It will be interesting to see how their rating react too, perhaps not for you the readers, but for me.

Mark Iverson Twittered on the subject of 14 home wins in the NFL at the weekend, a very unusual scenario which has last occurred in 2002 according to Mark. With the referees on strike, and replacement officials filling in, the possibility that the less experienced zebras are being influenced by the home crowds is a definite possibility. They also seem to be calling more pass interference penalties, a call which can mean a huge change in fortune. After two weeks of play, admittedly a small sample, there have been 43 called. The average number over the last three seasons is just 24.

My decent win at the weekend may owe a lot to the inexperience of these officials. The pressure will certainly increase on the NFL to settle the dispute after a generally poor second week, and if you missed it, one official was removed from the New Orleans Saints game three hours before kick-off after ESPN reported to NFL that his Facebook page showed him to be a big Saints fan! Oops. Funny how he forgot to mention that to the league.

An interesting post from the Sultan over at Centre Court Trading on the subject of the cost of becoming a trader - not financial, but the things in life that need to give way in order to allow trading to take place. Trading is time consuming, and while not many of us make the decision to trade full-time and pay the price by giving up a 'proper' job, many of us like to trade in our spare time, which should mean less of a social life. I say 'should' because one story the Sultan shares is of a prospective trader who revealed that "he was going to a party that evening and was going to attempt to trade on his mobile whilst there". To echo the Sultan, this attitude shows a naïve level of understanding for what trading entails, and it would indeed be a surprise if this individual was ultimately successful. A surprise, but it's possible for people to learn from mistakes and change, but in this situation, the attitude reflects such a poor understanding of the commitment needed, that it does seem unlikely.

The example did make me think about how my own relative success in trading has been helped by a number of factors. One is that my days of partying, at least on a frequent basis, are in the past. Had the betting exchange concept come about when I was 30 years younger, it is, to put it mildly, highly improbable that I would have been willing to give up girls and beer and spend hours trading. Sometimes a man has to do what a man has to do. Working in the City in the 80s involved a lot of 'socialising' both at lunch time and after work, and they were good times. 

The second factor is the rather fortuitous manner in which I received an introduction to statistics, a story I have regaled you with before. Surely you all remember? Who knew that a teenage schoolboy prank would not only lead me to a hobby, but also my career, and...

Factor three, which was the opportunity to work in the United States, and thus an exposure to the great games of baseball, American Football, basketball and (ice) hockey, and living in a college town, an understanding of college sports with their ever-changing conferences, and different rules. 

A fourth factor, somewhat linked to the first, is being at a stage in life where not only do I not care too much about going out all the time, but I am with someone who is more than happy for me to pursue my hobby. She doesn't care if I win or lose, or even how much I win or lose, which is an excellent trait after I've had a bad day! Even on my best day, all she had to say was "That's quite a lot".  

Anyway, back to the initial theme, and the Sultan writes of trading hopefuls: 
"...getting frustrated because they have been trading for a couple of months but aren't making any money. Or coming back from a long break and thinking they can just carry on doing what they did unsuccessfully before, only this time, it'll be successful."
The optimism of the trader, irrationally believing that somehow, this time it will be different. A little like the Republicans appeal to the US electorate "sorry we messed up last time, but we promise this time it'll be different". Romney's latest "47% are losers" blunder has dropped Obama's re-election odds still further. The 1.47 is now layable in the low 1.3s. 

Finally, that wanker who writes the poor, but occasionally tolerable, blog A Football Trader's Blah Blah Blah has a post that includes a downloadable spreadsheet which some of you might find interesting. Not me of course - I prefer to go back and read older posts from this blog here, oh yeah, that's what I'm talking about, which is quite an invaluable font of trading knowledge. Of course, if you like boring old spreadsheets that allow you to go back to previous seasons and see where teams stood at any particular time in the season, then you might be interested, but who likes spreadsheets that much?! 


500-5000 said...

Did you forget to include my comments on trading? It was a late addition!

SoccerDude said...

Wanker? You're calling me a wanker? No one calls me that.. not in the last week anyway.

I hope for your sake that you haven't downloaded my lovely spreadsheet, as it has the ability to detect the computer owner's name. If it spots your name, it will automatically empty your bank account, format your hard drive, send divorce papers to your wife, sell your children to the highest bidder and book you in for a sex change operation (to turn you into a man).

Don't mess with The Lord of Time.

Simon said...

Hi Cassini,

'Incredible' banter as ever. Some might not get you, but your recent posts have made me chuckle, I'm especially appreciating the quantity of posts lately.

About 3 years ago I had a blog for a brief stint although I can' remember its name, and you were kind enough to add it to your blog roll. Rather like the traders that The Sultan refers to, I obviously don't know when to quit. The difference this time, hopefully, is that I want to actually talk about sport as well as the odd story of me doing my dough after playing beer pong at some chick's house party. Anyway, the blog is at, please check it out and, if you like, add it to your blog.

P.S. sorry if this posted twice