Saturday, 28 September 2013

Suicide, Skipping And Tissues

A couple of comments on the last couple of posts to address. Emp is suicidal after failing to include West Bromwich Albion to win at Manchester United this afternoon, writing:

And I now feel like killing myself- Forgot to mention my last pick WBA to win against United, and they lead with 20 mins to go......
Indeed, they did, and that's how it stayed. I mentioned yesterday how your mind sees an event differently depending on where your money is, an similarly I'll bet there was part of Emp wishing that Manchester United would score. Anyone following a system will know that on occasion, it is simply not possible to get the bet placed. If the selection wins, it's annoying because you missed out. If the selection loses, you breathe a sigh of relief and thank fortune for getting the loser out of the way at no cost. This is understandable, but if your system has a positive edge, (and if it doesn't, why are you following it?), over time missing out on bets will cost you whatever the ROI is.

Anonymous was unclear on the selections listed.

Are those all home wins, draws away wins?
I get the Swindon Town @ bit but the others aren't clear
When the selection is listed as Braintree Town v Alfreton for example, the selection is Braintree Town, with the versus Alfreton added for clarification. In other words, the selection is the team first mentioned  unless specified otherwise.

The Football Analyst had three winners from twelve selections, but until the prices are available I won't know whether these would have been profitable to follow or not. I'll summarise after the weekend is over. One person who did have West Bromwich Albion to win is Webbo, a result that will certainly help his numbers.

One oddity from Peter Nordsted's Account Bet selections this weekend was the selection of  Over 1.5 and Over 3.5 goals in the Hull City v West Ham United game. What puzzles me is why the Over 2.5 goals is omitted. If the expected goals exceeds the market's expectation, then every Over.5 goals market should be value. The logic of skipping the 2.5 goals market escapes me. In the event, Overs was not a winner with just one goal (a penalty) being scored. Incidentally, I had the Under 2.5 goals priced at 1.65 for this game, which leads me to a question I was posed by email by an XX Draws subscriber on a bonus selection I had made. 
Fascinating..just what I have been waiting have 'Selection' at 1.83 whereas Ian at FTS has them at 2.69! and has them as a lay bet at 1.78 accordingly.
I have queried his ratings before on individual ratings that seem blatantly wrong but he won't have it.
Any thoughts?
All I can say is that I have my football pricing spreadsheet, or model sounds better, and it is improving all the time as more and more data is entered. I can't speak for how Ian prices up matches, or indeed if he does at all. Many tipsters seem to offer a selection as value, yet fail to suggest how they come to this conclusion. No model is 'correct', but some are better than others, and looking at a small sample is meaningless. However, if Ian consistently prices a team at 2.69 and I have the same team at 1.68 (not 1.83 as stated in the email by the way), then clearly one model needs some adjustment.

In my opinion, the only way that you can make the statement that something is value is to price it up yourself, and be able to support your opinion with data. If you are consistently wrong, then you need to revisit your spreadsheet / model and make some changes. Ultimately all prices come down to the goal expectancies - if your expectation of goals is consistently too high for example, then you need to see why and fix it. Maybe it is too high for some leagues and not for others. Again, keeping records is essential.

For example, for tomorrow's Stoke City v Norwich City match, I have the following:
H: 2.11   D: 3.56   A: 4.07   U: 1.85   O: 2.18
As XX Draw subscribers can confirm, when I mention a team as value, I give the price that I think they should be priced at. The four selections so far have been at 1.7 (my price 1.6), 2.12 (1.82), 1.68 (1.52) and 2.03 (1.77). 
I could be wrong, and stand to be corrected, but the feeling I get is that among the FTL tipsters, only The Football Analyst keeps detailed statistics and prices up matches like I do. Skeeve uses his knowledge of the leagues he covers to form his opinions, while Matt at Football Elite looks for strengths or trends that may have been missed by the market (although this strategy may be less effective in recent seasons than it was once). Peter Nordsted looks at a more broader set of historical statistics such as how teams from one category have fared when playing teams from another.

There's no right or wrong approach - just whatever works for you. I lean towards objectivity and an emphasis on data, but the weakness here is that it doesn't account for 'soft' issues such as changes in manager or injuries or suspensions etc. Others lean towards studying line ups and a detailed knowledge of their league with merely a nod towards data. The overall total from the FTL shows how difficult it is to get ahead in football betting, and how people approach solving this puzzle is interesting. 


emp said...

How right you are Cassini, there was a part of me wishing United would score, and that's notwithstanding the fact that I did remember to put my bet in, and the WBA win did give me many multiples of the first prize for this league!

Jamie said...

My model picked Man United and WBA to draw; i chose to lay Man U instead but didn't get my bet matched because i didn't keep accurate records of how i was going to change the bet which was suggested by the spreadsheet.

As you touched on, my mind sees the event differently: happy i didn't follow my model and back the draw, and annoyed that i didn't lay Man United as planned.

Cassini, do you calculate Ranked Probability Scores for your model? If so care to publish your numbers?
It would be interesting to see if your model is better at predicting all draws, or just a subset.