Wednesday 21 May 2014

FTL 2013-14 Wrap

It's over. Not Green All Over by any means, but the 2013-14 Friendly Tipster League is at an end.

And the winner is... Cassini Value Selections, with a profit of 24.77 points and a 20.47% ROI. No money though (it's considered poor form to enter and win your own competition) so the money goes elsewhere.

As many as 23 entries joined the party, with a prize fund of £500 to be had, as well as a £25 bonus for anyone finishing ahead of  a very confident The Football Analyst.

With The Football Analyst (Graeme) finishing ninth, five qualifying entries managed to do just that, Skeeve, Webbo, Fedslam and my own Bundeslayga and XX Under selections.

The pot prize money goes to:

  1. Skeeve (£250) 
  2. Webbo (£125)
  3. Fedslam (£75)
  4. Bundeslayga (£50)
In a moment of madness back in the Summer, I donated £50 to the pot to get the ball rolling, so it's nice to get it back!

Graeme - when you read this,  £125 via PayPal to calciocassini at would be in order, and I shall then redistribute the funds to the other winners.

Other than messing up Jamie A's numbers several weeks in a row, everything went pretty smoothly considering the total number of bets was close to 6,000! Unfortunately, the number of winning bets was quite a bit short of that, at just over 2,000 but the more relevant number is that combined, the entries lost 381.22 points. Only 7 of the 22 entries present at the end were in profit.

Here are the profitable entries with no positional changes:
Only the Cassini Value Selections and XX Draws were in action on the final weekend, although both wish there was a release clause excusing them from making end-of-term selections as both made losses.

The lower two-thirds of the table looks like this:
Football Elite had one final selection, which lost, and Jamie A dropped from 17th to 18th with a poor final weekend. Rubicon had one selection, a lay of Barcelona, and was the only profitable entry. Down 60 points in January, Neil could easily have walked away, but he stayed in there and kept me busy with 770 entries over the season and deserves some credit for staying the course, as do other Amateurs who found themselves off the pace with no real chance of cashing in. Three entries fell by the wayside in January (Graham C, Scatter Gun and Murphy's Law) but everyone else hung in to the end.

Had there been one, Rubicon would have won the prize for biggest weekly profit making 30.95 points in one week in May. Unfortunately he followed it with 19 losses and a short winner the following week, such is life.

Just for interest, if we strip out those entries (lower selection totals) who left early to avoid the traffic, and sort by ROI, Neil actually fares a lot better moving up to twelfth. Only Rubicon and Peter Nordsted's Premier Betting have a double digit losing ROI, and my hilarious joke that next season, Peter's service should be renamed Championship Betting, can be repeated. At least Matchbook readers are in the money, being tipped the other side of these bets!
It's been fun. We must do it again some time. I have some ideas to hopefully improve the whole thing, but using one set of prices (Pinnacle Sports) for everyone seems to work quite well so long as everyone understands that these prices, and thus totals, can often be beaten and that the table is for comparative and entertainment purposes only.

One idea is to award prize money to every entry in profit and make it proportional to the size of the profit, so for this year, and assuming all entries qualified for prize money, the returns (last column) would have been:
I'll also only include paid entries next season, and no longer include the 'official' selections from the professionals in the table.

No harm in looking for sponsors for next season now, so if Graeme, Ian Erskine, Skeeve, Football Elite, Premier Betting, SoTDoc or anyone else would like to bid for sponsorship / naming rights, don't be shy.

And if any readers are interested in entering for 2014-15, or have any comments or suggestions, shoot me an email.   calciocassini @   or leave a comment.


Graeme Dand said...

Thanks again for running this league this season Cassini. I’ve sent £125 via paypal this morning. Well done to those in the league who wiped the floor with my returns this season. £125 seems like a result tbh considering the start I had! £400 was a possibility for much of the season.

The ‘official’ results for the Cassini system this season was only 3.4pts profit for a 0.85% ROI. For comparison, this system ranks 34th out of 53 systems in terms of returns this season (inc the Cassini system along with 52 other systems). The Cassini system was supposed to represent a fair reflection of the service and I think this worked to an extent. It certainly mirrored the ups and downs the systems as a whole experienced through the season although the final results were probably a little bit lower than on most other systems but the Cassini system seemed to have more than its fair share of bad breaks during the season. That’s what happens over 400 bets.

I think the 14pts gap between the Pinnacle prices on a Friday afternoon and Thursday evening is what I didn’t really expect this season although as always, it’s obvious with hindsight. Given how much the odds move on my teams on a Thursday evening, the market hasn’t rebounded by Friday afternoon and therefore, I think Friday afternoon is probably a low point for my bets in terms of the odds. Saturday morning odds are when my bets tend to rebound a little if they are going to rebound.

For me to perform well in this league with the odds quoting on a Friday afternoon, I think I’d need to have a very good season but it won’t stop me from trying. The key for me is to try to get the best system or systems in the league and therefore, I expect I’ll use an actual TFA system next season in the league rather than a made up system. Will at least allow people to get a better flavour of the service although this league should always understate the return.

Happy to contribute something towards a prize pool again for next season. Don’t fancy getting into a bidding war but something like this season would be OK for me I think. £25 for everyone who beats me up to a max of £500. Given the issue with the odds quoting for my particular bets, I suspect break-even in this league isn’t a bad result each season for me! Surely anyone can devise a system based on Friday afternoon odds to beat a break-even system. ;)



Lay Away said...

Again big thanks to Cassini for running this, it has been a hoot.

Fair Play to Graeme in coughing up his hard earned, we don't exactly see eye to eye but he has sort of grown on me as the season has progressed :-)

The Barcelona of the competition turned out to be more of a Barnsley but hey as I finished bottom I am in no position to throw any stones :-)

I am looking forward to next season already.


Graeme Dand said...

Cheers Neil.

I do think we just started off on the wrong foot in the SBC forum tbh mate. I maybe shouldn’t have been so strong in my initial postings on your footie thread but I think you actually had a lot of good ideas generally. As I’ve said before, I don’t hold any grudges at this game and life’s too short for that sort of thing anyway!

Enjoy your summer mate and battle can commence next season again.

So everyone knows, I’ll probably enter Atletico Madrid next year instead of Barcelona tbh, I clearly missed the fact Barcelona have gone off the boil a bit and they aren’t as good as they once were. I would name all my systems as footie teams but given the number of systems, I'd have to use Sunday League team names at some point! :)