Betting on football is one of the most common types of sports wagering. As a result, many people put their knowledge into action hoping to get a favorable outcome. If you wish to be the next lucky winner, check the information presented below.
Understanding the odds
Whenever you test a bookmaker’s offer, you will notice a set of numbers associated with each bet line. Those are the odds. Most websites display them in either decimal format (Europe), money line format (United States) or fractional format (Asia), so you can select them based on your location.
Odds, also known as quota or prices, are primarily used to determine the potential payout for a certain bet line. However, based on this set of numbers, bettors can also calculate the probability of an outcome to occur.
Assuming a match in the Premier League between Chelsea vs. West Ham, let’s give an example of how to calculate your winnings and the probability for each outcome:
Chelsea to win – 1.71
Draw – 3.00
West Ham to win – 5.00
How to calculate potential profits
Winnings are calculated by multiplying your stake with the odds. Assuming a $10 stake we have:
Chelsea to win – 1.71 * $10 = $17.10
Draw – 3.00 * $10 = $30
West Ham to win – 5.00 * $10 = $50
How to calculate probabilities based on odds
Using the following formula, bettors can determine the probability of a certain outcome to occur:
Probability = (1/ betting odds) * 100
In our case we have:
Chelsea to win – (1/1.71) * 100 = 58%
Draw – (1/3.00) * 100 = 33%
West Ham to win – (1/5) * 100 = 20%
Bookmaker’s profit margin
In case you’ve noticed from our example, if you add all the probabilities for each outcome together you’ll get: 58% + 33% + 20% = 111%. The extra 11% represents a bookmaker’s profit margin. So each time you place a bet you’re actually paying the bookmaker as well.
Many sports bettors think that they compete against the betting companies, which is absolutely wrong. Bookmakers operate in terms of balancing the books. In other words, by controlling the odds, they can evenly distribute the accepted bets on all possible outcomes to a particular match. This way, winning bets will pay for the losing bets while the bookie makes money by charging the profit margin on all of them.
Now that you have a better understanding of how a bookmaker operates, it’s time to take a look at some of the most popular bet types.
Single bets or straight bets refer to one selection per bet. From our previous example, picking “Chelsea to win” is a single bet.
Multiple bets or accumulators allow you to pick multiple events on a single betting slip. For this type of bet, the winning probability is much lower than single bets but offers higher payouts since odds for each event is multiplied.
Live or in play bets are offered by the great majority of online bookmakers and have become extremely popular since they allow bettors to place their picks while watching the event live.
Now that you have learned a little bit more about odds and bet types, it might be a good idea to start working on a betting strategy that can help you become profitable in the long run.