Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Fizzer Fizzles

Overall, a losing weekend for the FTL tipsters combined, but some success stories within the total loss. The big winner of the weekend was Forza Fizzer who found five winners from seven selections, made a profit of 11.13 points, and leapt from 13th into second place overall, and first place (£225) in the race for the cash. Fizz had these decent priced home winners:


Emp held onto his overall lead adding another 4.66 points, and coincidentally also had Burnley and Yeovil Town in his selections. He also had Reims to win at Olympique Marseille at 8.18, and win they did, 3-2.

Fairfranco moved up to third overall (£112.50) gaining 5.58 points, and the idle Skeeve hangs on to third cash place and £67.50. Provisionally in fourth cash spot (£45) pending payment, is new boy Graham who opened his account with a 0.56 point profit. The only other entry in profit is my Cassini Value Selections, but they had a disastrous Saturday with all three losing without scoring and Toulouse the worst losing 0-5. Sunday was better with Bologna beating Livorno, although it could hardly have been worse!

Of the entries in the red, i.e. most of them, Punter's Friend made a move off the bottom moving up four places with an 8.5 point profit, and Murphy's Law also moved up four places with a smaller 0.72 point profit. Football Elite made a small profit, as did the Drawmaster, but the XX Draws (and Unders) as well as the Bundeslayga system all had small losses. Late goals again proved an irritation with three of the nine XX Draw games losing out to them, although Paris St Germain did score a late goal to make up for that a little.

Fedslam sat out this week, debutante Jamie Ayton had a weekend to forget, and Rubicon dropped four places. Webbo lost nearly five points, Scatter Gun dropped just one and then we have the big boys Peter Nordsted and his Premier Betting and The Football Analyst. Graeme actually made 0.7 points on the weekend but still drops one place with a bounty liability of £400 currently.

Pete's Premier Betting had another losing weekend. The Official bets, using the prices quoted by Peter, lost another 5.5 points, while the cash eligible entry lost 5.18 points. Sunday was actually a good day for them after a wipeout on Saturday, with Tottenham Hotspur v Hull City the low scoring game expected, and Sunderland defeating Newcastle United. The tide may have turned.

Rather embarrassingly, the Amateurs are now performing better than the Professionals, although as that simply means they are losing less, it's not too much to shout about. Football remains one of the harder nuts in betting to crack, but someone losing his nuts right now is my old friend Steve over at Daily 25 who had this to say last week:
How do I even describe how I’m feeling right now. Depressed, angry, pissed. I decided to get up at 5:30am this morning as I had $32,000 worth of bets on the League 1 and 2 games and knew it was a pivotal moment for my betting career. I’m pretty sure I have never lost that much money in just 90 minutes and I’ve had some big nights in Vegas.
The $ in question are Australian, but that's a lot of money to be staking on lower league football. I know when Steve followed the XX Draws that he didn't get the best odds, which is crucial in my opinion, and these were selections in big markets, and I can't help thinking that in less liquid matches, the value must be borderline at best given the stake size.
John Walsh's hockey picks have gone as cold as the ice they are played on. Since the last update, he had four consecutive losing selections but the rot came to an end last night as the Dallas Stars hung on to beat the Buffalo Sabres 4-3.
After three losing weeks, John's NFL selections returned to profit this week, although still down on the season overall.

Back to football and goal expectancy, a couple of comments on yesterday's post. Jamie had this to say:
Well that's not really a provable statement, but if we let ϵ>0...

Lets go with the alternative statement of when is a football match likely to end in a draw, which then leads to either low goal expectancy (for 0-0 scorelines) or it suits both teams as you suggest.
Thus, a draw doesn't usually suit both teams.

Is this because a win is worth 3 points to the winner and a draw is worth 1 point each? - i.e. game theory.
Or because this is a sport we're talking about?
Maybe a model based on how much a draw would suit both teams would give a higher draw probability in some cases.

An in-play model might work with teams who play a specific style - i.e. more likely to sit back and settle for a draw with x mins to go.
Nick added:
As Jamie suggests you would think the points incentive of a win over a draw would effect the draw price. But the year they changed from 2pts to 3pts in England (1981/82), there was 121 draws, actually 3 draws more than the previous season's 118.
In a way it proves Cassini's "mathematical proof" on goal expectancies. If back then there were people running their BBC Micros or Acorn Electrons to get goal expectancies to derive match odds, their models wouldn't have been any less accurate, at least for draws.
It's an interesting angle, and while in the immediate period after the introduction of 3 points for a win, the number of draws dropped, they have since returned to the same level. As Nick said, there was an immediate drop in draws as might be expected with more goals:
In the five seasons before the switch, there were an average of 133.0 draws per season in what was then the First Division; in the five seasons after, there was an average of 113.4. By way of comparison, there were 108 in the Premier League last season and if you extrapolate that to take account of the reduction in the number of top-flight teams from 22 to 20, you get a figure of 131.
I think that in a match where the draw would suit both teams, this is reflected in the goal expectancies, weighted by just how much a draw would suit both teams. An end of season match where a draw would see both teams survive relegation for example would be a draw that would "really" suit both teams, whereas an early season Norwich City v Cardiff City might suit both teams, but maybe not enough to stop them trying to the end for a winner that would give them an extra two points.
Whether three points for a win possibly reduces the likelihood that teams will come to a tacit agreement to play out the final minutes of a tied game for a draw is an interesting thought, and it certainly seems that way at times!

If three points for a win means more goals, then the number of draws would be expected to fall. There's a reason why the Bundesliga sees less draws than Ligue 1.

Incidentally, the origin of the two points for a win, one for a draw comes from 'challenge' matches, where a winner would take all, and in the event of a draw, the pot would be split.


fairfranco said...

quick question that I hope doesn't make me seem to foolish!

on the league table what do IP and LW mean?


Jamie. said...

IP = 1/selection rate, ie. the implied price.

LW = last weeks position in table

Emp said...

LW= Last Week

IP has me stumped, but I think it has something to do with the Average price of your winners.

Jamie said...

* 1/strike rate