Sunday, 1 November 2020

Football Outsiders

With few of my sports currently active, I have too much time on my hands, and during a trawl of the Betfair Forum I came across a thread titled Football outsiders - match odds market.

The OP Shanelee1966 wrote:
To back 4 teams every Friday/Saturday who are 5/1 or over. English leagues ideally.
I may venture into Europe, lets see how it goes.

Starting bank £20, fiver a throw.

Blindly backing outsiders in any sport is generally the fastest way to lose your money, and if this strategy had been applied to the Premier League since 2000, the ROI would have been around -14.08%

Given that in the early years of this century the over-round was sometimes as high as 113%, this number looks worse than it is, but what surprised me a little is that if you apply this strategy to Home teams only, then it is actually profitable with an ROI of 7.75% from 514 matches. 

If we look at the Pinnacle era (i.e. since 2012) when the over-round has averaged a more competitive 102.2%, the ROI on these Home outsiders increases to 20.7% from 270 matches. With one exception (Aston Villa v Southampton in April 2016), in every match the Away team has been one of the Big 6. In four matches the Home club was also "Big 6", and two of these won.

I took a look at this strategy for big Home 'Dogs in some of the other top leagues in the Pinnacle era to the end of last season, and in La Liga the ROI is 30.7%, while in Ligue 1, hardly any home teams are priced at such long odds, and all seven in the eight seasons lost. However, the return on Away sides priced at 5/1 or longer is 31.4%.  

As mentioned many times before, when it comes to European football, a one-size fits all approach never works as each league and division has its own personality. 

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