Brazil versus Croatia to score more than 2.5 goals

BRAZIL VS CROATIA BETTING TIPS ON 12/06/2014, at long last, the opening WORLD CUP GROUP A match between BRAZIL and CROATIA finally get under way, Brazil who is rank 4th in the world with CROATIA who is rank 20th in the FIFA ranking, no one would expect Brazil will get beat, as history had stated that there were no host nations every lost their opening game being at home soil, likewise there will be no exception here!

Brazil coach Luiz Felipe Scolari returns for his second spell and managing the Samba Boys once more and hoping to bring home with the world cup, the host nations no doubt is the favourite, but how well will Brazil cope with pressure from their opening game and will they win by a higher margin?

Croatia will mainly rely on Mandzukic up front, their fire power is pretty much limited, so I am concern on their opening game as the host nation home supporters will give them too much pressure and mistakes will be made!

I expect Brazil will play attacking football to kick start the world cup as a host nation with enough goals to satisfy the world of audience on TV, Over 2.5 goals odds will soon drop, so lock on your best price now!

RECOMMENDATION: OVER 2.5 GOALS @ 1.93

5 Reasons Why Argentina Can Lift the World Cup in Brazil

Argentina have been a perpetual candidate for the World Cup ever since winning their first title at home in 1978. With an enviable roster of stars and some of the best players in the world, it is therefore surprising to learn that the nation has not managed to pass the quarter-final stage for 24 years.

In 2014, however, many observers believe that it could be the year of the Albiceleste. The defence still fails to convince, but there are plenty of reasons why the side led by Lionel Messi could break that losing streak in Brazil.

So will it be La Pulga who lifts the Jules Rimet trophy in the Maracana on July 13? Here are five reasons why Argentina will be one of the teams to beat in the world’s most prestigious football competition.

5. The Mascherano Effect

Argentina have the luxury of calling on not one, but two captains when they take the field. Although Barcelona star Javier Mascherano ceded the armband to club team-mate Lionel Messi, his impact on the Albiceleste’s performance continues to be pivotal in the middle of the pitch.

Mascherano provides an understated support to Argentina’s flashy superstars, doing the hard destroying work and bolstering a defence that is far from world-beating. His commitment and tenacity are unquestioned, and forming a double pivot with the more creative Fernando Gago, the ex-Liverpool player is a crucial cog in the machine.


4. (Almost) Home Advantage

As the hosts, Brazil will go into the World Cup as one of the strongest favourites.

However, neighbours Argentina—and indeed the entire South American contingent at the tournament—will feel confident at giving a good show on home soil, too.

Both the nation’s World Cup wins, as hosts in 1978 and in Mexico eight years later, occurred close to home. They reached the final in Uruguay in 1930 as well, but fell to the all-powerful Celeste team that had won the two previous Olympic Games.

Argentina are bound to have a fierce following this year, and historical precedent suggests they will be very competitive indeed.

3. An Intelligent Coach

Throughout the qualifying campaign, Argentina’s attacking prowess often made the difference right from the beginning. When the team began to splutter, however, coach Alejandro Sabella showed the intelligence and bravery needed to make big changes.

An example of the ex-Estudiantes man’s nous was evident away to Colombia.

Playing in the stifling humidity of Barranquilla in a key fixture early in the tournament, a defensive Argentina team struggled and went into half-time 1-0 down.

Sabella’s response was to throw on the fresh legs of Sergio Aguero, a switch that paid dividends. The Albiceleste went on to record an excellent 2-1 victory, giving them control in the Conmebol group that they would not relinquish for the rest of the campaign.

2. Strength in Depth

Everybody who follows international football will be aware that the first-choice Argentina line-up possesses an embarrassment of riches. However, should any of the starters face misfortune in Brazil, there are plenty of options on the bench.

Midfielders of the calibre of Ever Banega and Lucas Biglia are on hand if Javier Mascherano or Fernando Gago be unavailable at any point, and are worthy replacements. Angel Di Maria, meanwhile, will know that Tottenham’s Erik Lamela is keen to deputise at any point.

Further up the field, top strikers like Ezequiel Lavezzi, Rodrigo Palacio and Maxi Rodriguez would walk into most international setups. With the Albiceleste, they represent a potent option coming off the bench.


1. Lionel Messi

The Barcelona forward is bound to be the centre of attention in Brazil, where he will captain the Albiceleste—and with good reason.

A Lionel Messi in form and scoring goals could well be the catalyst Argentina need to break a 28-year drought and lift a third World Cup.

So far, La Pulga is yet to show his best side in a major international tournament. However, he has found a coherent place in the Seleccion under Alejandro Sabella, linking further up the field with forward partners Sergio Aguero and Gonzalo Higuain.

That trio, with Messi at its epicentre, can supply the goals that drive Argentina to a place on the podium.

Exact Set Score

This is one of the more popular live tennis wagers. The bettor has to choose both the winner of the set, and the amount of games each player will win. For example, you could wager that Player A will win 6-4, or Player B will win 7-6. Naturally, the odds will pay less for scores that favor the better player, and bigger payoffs will result from choosing a lopsided set score in favor of the underdog.

There is a lot of strategy and forethought that can go into this type of wager. Below is a simple three step process outlining how you can choose your set score.

1. Will the better player win?

The first question to ask yourself is whether or not you think the favored player will win that given set. You can base your decision on how the head to head matchups have gone historically, what surface they are playing on, the progress of the match thus far, etc. While thinking about which player you think will win the set, consider how long it takes you to decide. If you quickly decide that Player A will prevail, that should be a good indication that you are anticipating a lopsided score. If you debate back and forth over Player A or B winning the set, you probably are leaning toward a close score in the end.

2. Who is serving first?

This is important particularly if you don’t expect very many breaks of serve within the set. Say Player A serves first in a set, holds every serve, and breaks once. That set would result in a 6-3 set score in favor of Player A. However, the same one break and all holds set would wind up at 6-4 if Player A served second within the set. Understanding this simple difference is crucial when choosing your set score. Take note of who is serving first and use that information to your advantage.

3. Surface

The playing surface has a major impact on tennis matches, and you must factor it into your thinking. Sets played on clay tend to be closer because of the increased frequency of service breaks. Matches played on grass, such as at Wimbledon, usually favor big servers and see a lot of games held.

Once you have gone through these three steps, you should have a pretty good idea of what you expect the set score to be. Resist the temptation to just guess at a final score without thinking through this process. There are always hints and clues to how a match will play out – you just need to take the time to consider them carefully and combine them all into a smart choice.

How to Bet on Hockey

The National Hockey League may rank a distant fourth of the four major sports in the United States, but that hasn’t stopped sportsbooks from posting lines on the NHL. Bettors who are willing to put some effort into handicapping the National Hockey League are often rewarded by the public’s nonchalance to the sport, as oddsmakers don’t spend the same amount of time creating NHL odds as they do a more popular sport, such as football or basketball.

Hockey bettors will find lower betting limits on NHL games than they will in the NFL or NBA, something which is generally an acknowledgment by the sportsbooks that they are less comfortable accepting bets on the NHL than they are in the other two sports.

Betting the National Hockey League
Before a person can start to bet the NHL, it’s important they have a solid understanding of the money line. If the money line is a new concept for you, read Understanding Money Lines.

The money line is the most common method of betting the NHL, although there is also a puck line, which we will discuss a bit later, as well as totals. A number of sportsbooks also offer the “Grand Salami,” which is the combined total of all the games that are played on a particular day, and we’ll discuss that a bit later, as well.

Nearly every sportsbook uses a 20-cent line on the National Hockey League. The 20-cents refers to the difference in the odds on the favorite and the odds on the underdog. But as with other sports, such as baseball, the odds on an extremely large favorite will often be greater than the 20 cents.

The odds on a typical National Hockey League game may look like:

Calgary +110
Vancouver -130

What that means is that Vancouver bettors are asked to risk $130 to win $100, while Calgary bettors risk $100 to win $110.

But the odds on a game with a larger favorite are more inclined to look like:

Toronto +250
Detroit -300

The larger difference in odds is typical in all sports, not just hockey, so it isn’t as if hockey bettors are being singled out.
The Puck Line
While betting on the winner of the game, as shown above, is the most popular method of betting the NHL, there is also the puck line, which baseball bettors will recognize as being quite similar to the run line. When betting the puck line, bettors can either lay 1.5 goals with the favorite or take 1.5 goals with the underdog. The puck line used to be .5 goals, but the shootout eliminated the possibility of a tie game, so the oddsmakers bumped the puck line up to 1.5 goals.

Using the two games above, the puck lines odds will be something like:

Calgary +1.5 (-240)
Vancouver -1.5 (+200)

Toronto +1.5 (-110)
Detroit -1.5 (-110)

Now, Calgary bettors will win their wagers if Calgary wins the game or losses by one goal, while Vancouver bettors can only win their wagers if the Canucks win by two goals or more. But Calgary bettors are now asked to risk $240 to $100 and Vancouver bettors are risking $100 to win $200.

Likewise, Toronto bettors will win their bets if the Maple Leafs win or lose by one goal and Detroit bettors will only win their bet if the Red Wings win by two or more goals.

Totals Bettors also have the option of betting on the total number of goals scored in a game. The sportsbooks will post a number, generally between 5 and 6.5 and bettors can wager the number of goals scored in the game will be greater (over) than the posted number or less (under) than the posted number.

There is one primary difference in betting hockey totals as opposed to betting basketball and football totals. Because scoring in hockey is so much lower than in football or basketball, the bookmakers are reluctant to change the number of a total and instead will often adjust the odds.

Example: If the over/under number on the Red Wings and Penguins is 6 and a bettor places a $500 wager on the over, the bookmaker is unlikely to raise the total to 6.5. Instead, he will make bettors who wish to wager over 6 risk $120 to win $100, which is written as -120. Those wishing to bet the under would then be able to wager at even money or +100, as totals nearly always use a 20-cent line.

If people continue to bet the over, the bookmaker will continue to adjust the odds upward and eventually bettors may have to risk $145 to win $100, or -145. In this case, an under bettor would risk $100 to win $125. The bookmaker will generally raise the odds up to -145 before raising the total to the next number, which in this case would be 6.5.

So totals can take on several different forms, but will nearly always look like one of the two following examples:

Detroit vs. Toronto over 5.5 (-110)
Detroit vs. Toronto under 5.5 (-110)

Detroit vs. Toronto over 5.5 (-135)
Detroit vs. Toronto under 5.5 (+115)

In the first example, bettors are asked to wager $110 to win $100 regardless if they bet the over or the under. This is sometimes referred to as “5.5-flat,” meaning it is -110 on both the over and the under.

In the second example, bettors who wish to wager on the over will have to risk $135 to win $100, while under bettors will risk $100 to win $115. This is commonly referred to as “5.5-Over.

Grand Salami The Grand Salami is practically an institution for hockey bettors. The Grand Salami allows hockey fans to have a rooting interest in every game being played on a particular day for the cost of one bet.

How the Grand Salami works is the sportsbooks will let bettors wager over or under the total number of goals scored in all of the games played on a particular day. If there are 10 games on a given day, the Grand Salami total will generally be around 53 to 60, depending on the particular games. Just as with regular totals, there will be times when bettors are risked to give higher odds on betting the over or the under.

Now you’re ready to place a wager on the coolest game on ice.

Betting tips for Real Madrid v Atletico Madrid

Predicted line-ups:

Real Madrid: Casillas; Carvajal, Ramos, Pepe, Marcelo; Di Maria, Illarramendi, Modric; Bale, Benzema, Ronaldo.

Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo have recovered from their injuries and will be fit for Saturday, while Pepe and Karim Benzema remain slight doubts, but are likely to be featured.

Xabi Alonso will miss out due to suspension.

Atletico Madrid: Courtois; Juanfran, Miranda, Godin, Luis; Turan, Tiago, Gabi, Koke; Villa, Gracia.

Atletico confirmed that Arda Turan and Diego Costa will be included in the squad, as both have returned to training on Thursday.

Costa, who went to see ‘placenta doctor’ Marijana Kovacevic in a bid to be match fit, is likely to start on the bench, while Turan is tipped to be fit enough for a starting berth.

Betting Tip:

When Europe’s finest footballers meet on Saturday in Lisbon for the Champions League final, history will be made long before Dutch referee Bjorn Kuipers blows the starting whistle.

Never before have two teams from the same city faced each other in any of the European Cup finals. Moreover, this is only the second time an all Spanish Champions League final will be held, after Real and Valencia met back in 2000 in Stade de France in Paris.

For Atletico, these past few days seem like a story taken from a fairytale.

After managing to break the 10 year old Barca/Real duopoly in La Liga and winning the Championship last week, they are now given the opportunity to place the cherry atop an already sensational season and challenge their most bitter rival. Madrid is no longer an undisputed Real fortitude.

Earlier this week, Los Blancos boss Carlo Ancelotti had confirmed that both of his superstars, Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo will be fit for the final, while Xabi Alonos will have to miss with a suspension.

Diego Simeone is still hoping Diego Costa and Arda Turan will be fit on time for Saturday’s clash, but it’s not looking good as of today. Although both have returned to training ahead of Saturday, it appears only Turan could make an appearance in the starting lineup, while Costa – even if fit – will start on the bench. Raul Garcia is likely to replace the Rojiblancos top scorer up front.

Real will be looking to end their 12 year drought and win their 10th Champions League/European Cup title, while Atletico will attempt to add a further sensation to their resume and bag their first.

Sit back. It should be a cracker!

Prediction: Real Madrid 2 – Atletico Madrid 1

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Some essential facts to help with online betting:

Real Madrid have been in 12 previous finals, winning 9 and losing 3.

The last time Real Madrid lifted the Champions League Trophy was back in 2002 when they beat Bayer Leverkusen 2-1 at Hampden Park in Scotland.

Real Madrid have a goal per match average of 3.08, a full goal more than Atletico Madrid with 2.08.

Atletico Madrid have never won a Champions League title.

From 31 meetings, Atletico have won only 9.7% of the time, Real Madrid won 80.6% of the time.

Horse Betting Approaches

Now, of course, there are many races, which qualify here:

  • Slower ground and high handicap
  • A jockey change to an inexperienced jockey, jockey with a win percentage or below 5%
  • Strong Step up in class when another horse also has potential.
  • Long pause and decent competition in the race
  • Long run in lost race

The selection process must therefore be carefully and Staking vote.

Staking on Lay

The following plans nearly 1:1 on the Lay Bets transferred:

  • % Of the bank – always 1%, 2%, etc. of the current bank as use, or always possible loss x% of the bank
  • Solid bet for each bet, or fixed risk of loss on each bet.
  • La Boucherre plan

Other approaches, or modified approaches

The first approach is similar to the retrieval-staking plan: Take back a sum X, wants to win it. Exactly this sum as it is now used, as it always wins double his bet. If you win the bet, you start again at zero, you lose it, and it is next again the sum X + the lost sum. This is repeated until you have a winner. Disadvantage is that, if you are unlucky and two or three bets lose overlap, it suffered huge losses. Even at a rate of 4 the lost only 2 bets and expected profit would be € 10 € 200 loss. Respectively, they are at higher rates higher losses. Those who can afford it can, of course, horses with rates beyond the 70 Layen. This win only rarely and rarely predictable race.

The staking plan is based on a gradation of use after the possible loss, the liability:

  • Under 3.5 – Lay with 1% of the bank
  • From 3.6 to 7.4 – Lay with 0.6% of the bank
  • From 7.5 to 11 – Lay with 0.4% of the bank
  • Ratios above 11 are ignored
  • The stakes are here daily if you win
  • Lose, however, that are stakes only from a loss of 35% of the initial bank adapted. Here one starts again with 1% of the stakes, and it increases and decreases days after won him again after lost 35%.

Betting Strategy: the Surebet

The simplest strategy in sports betting is to place exclusively surebets. As Surebet refers to a sports bet. In general, the bet on a sporting event can be placed, for which there are only 2 possible outcomes, such as gain or loss of a team. The Surebet exploits variations in the ratios of various sports books, must therefore be placed at different operators. For a sporting event for which there are 2 possible outcomes are thus 2 bets from different providers required. Football betting is normally not directly suitable for Surebets as a game usually can have 3 possible outcomes: home win, draw or away win. Almost all sports betting sites offer However, the so-called over / under bets. The sports enthusiast can live here on the sum of the goals scored in a game.

Curiously, the total number of goals is always given as half of the number, e.g. over 3.5 goals or under 1.5 goals. Thus, only 2 outputs are possible because in a football game never 3.5 or 1.5 goals can be achieved. That is what makes the over / under bet, a good candidate for Surebets.

If you now find a sportsbook that for a game starting with total over 1.5 goals offering a rate of 2.10, and at the same time find another bookmaker, the one feature output of less than 1.5 goals pays a rate of 2.05, did you tinkered one Surebet. No matter how the game starts, you will always make profit if you both bookmakers betting the same amount. In other words, there is sports bet only 2 possible outcomes, and offer two different providers for each output, a ratio above 2.00, it certainly wins.

Even if the ratio is below 2.00 will have a page on a surebet is possible. In order to stay in the example above, we take on the fictional Bwin for the match output of less than 1.5 goals a quota of 1.40 offers. On the other hand, Betfair promises output over 1.5 goals at odds of 3.75. Bet you are now € 100 at Bwin and 37 euros at Sport bet, the following variants are possible. The game ends with 0 or gates with 1 goal.

In this case, you win at Bwin 140 euros of which you have to deduct 100 euros used. Net income so 40 euros. The bet at Interwetten and lost her sets 37 euros in the sand. Total profit so 3 euros. Conversely, it looks like when the game 2 goals or more can be achieved.

Then your application is 100 euros at Bwin are gone but at Interwetten you win 138.75 euros.Again, the use must be deducted, so that still remain about 101.75 euros net income. When she with the loss of at Bwin against expects her is 1.75 euros in the black.

Betting tips for Arsenal v Hull City: Predicted line-ups & essential facts and stats

Predicted line-ups:

Arsenal: Fabianski; Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs; Ramsey, Arteta; Ozil, Cazorla, Podolski; Giroud.

Alex Oxlade-Chambarlain and Jack Wilshere are slight doubts, but both are expected to reach full fitness by Saturday. Gnabry, Miyaichi, and Walcott are all sidelined due to injuries.

Hull: Harper; Bruce, Chester, Davies, Figueroa, Rosenior; Livermore, Huddlestone, Elmohamady; Boyd; Sagbo.

Shane Long and Nikica Jelavic are ineligible to play, while Robbie Brady, James Chester, and Sone Aluko are all struggling with injuries.

Betting Tip:

On paper this look like an easy win for Arsenal, an opportunity to finally put behind their dire years and lift silverware for the first time since 2005.

Arsenal have reached 18 FA Cup finals and won 10 of them, while Hull City finished 16th in the league and is a an FA final debutant at Wembley.

However, when the Gunners face Hull on Saturday, they will be reminded of last year’s Wigan upset over Manchester City, and of their own arrogance in 2011, when they managed to let the Carlin Cup final slip away against Birmingham.

Although Hull’s record against Arsenal this season falls short of impressive, having lost both games at home and at the Emirates, Steve Bruce’s men will be determined to emulate Wigan, who also managed to squeeze every bit of effort out of the Gunners in the semi-finals this year.

Prepare for a concentrated and calculated Arsene Wenger side to pursue an attacking strategy right from the get go, and place Hull under constant barrage, while the Tigers will attempt to close off the flanks and lurk for counter attacks.

Prediction: Arsenal 2 – Hull 1

Some essential facts to help with online betting:

Since the league was founded in 1888, there has been at least one top-flight side in every FA Cup final – both Arsenal and Hull overcame lower league opposition in the semi finals.

Arsene Wenger will be managing Arsenal for his 10th overall final ­and his sixth FA Cup final.

This will be Hull City’s first ever appearance in an FA Cup final – they will be the 57th different side to play in the final of this competition.

Arsenal have won two of their previous five FA Cup clashes with Hull City (drawing two and losing the other). Other than their meeting in 2009, they have not met in the competition since 1930.

The last seven FA Cup finals have been won by a single goal margin and produced just 11 goals.

The last six finals have been determined in normal time. The last final to require extra time was in 2007 when Chelsea beat Manchester Unietd. The last one to need penalties was in 2006 when Liverpool beat West Ham United in a spot-kick finish.

The Gunners have lifted the trophy on five of their last six appearances in the FA Cup final.
Just one of the last five debuting finalists have won the trophy, although that was Wigan Athletic last year.

Arsenal have scored 19 goals in their last eight matches against Hull City in all competitions.

Hull have scored just once in their last four clashes with Arsenal in all competitions.

Hull’s six games in the 2014 FA Cup have produced 20 goals in total.

Olivier Giroud has scored five goals in his last six FA Cup games, including three in four substitute appearances this season.

Lukas Podolski has scored four goals in five FA Cup games for Arsenal.

The importance of value betting – Part Two

There is no right or wrong approach to seeking a betting edge. Ultimately, the best one is the one that works for you, one that returns a profit. However, what each approach has in common is a shared aim of finding “value” in the odds, where the true chance of a win is greater than that estimated by the bookmaker. Many punters fail to appreciate the importance of value betting, preferring to subscribe to the “back winners, not losers” school of gambling. Betting on Liverpool at Anfield to beat Sunderland at 4/11, it might be argued, is surely preferable to betting on Sunderland to beat Liverpool at 13/2, even if the bookie has restricted Liverpool’s odds but been generous with Sunderland’s. Liverpool, simply, are too good, however poor the price.

This analysis is confused because the punter has failed to assess Liverpool’s chance of a win in probabilistic terms, but instead rather simply by whether he thinks they will or won’t be victorious. “Winners” cannot win all the time, no matter how much a punter is convinced that they can. The important question a punter should instead be asking is whether the true chance of a winner is greater than that which the bookmaker has unfairly (in his mind), but potentially mistakenly (in the punter’s mind), estimated it to be. In other words, is the bookmaker’s price greater than that which the punter considers to be the fair price? If it is, then he has found a value bet, provided he can estimate prices better than the bookmaker, of course.

A good bettor will be generally unconcerned about backing the underdog, or perhaps more relevantly backing a team which he thinks will not win (underdog or not), provided there is value bet in the bookmaker’s odds. A good bettor estimating the likelihood for the Liverpool win to be 70%, with a 15% chance of a Sunderland win would back the away team, despite believing that Liverpool should win. According to these estimations, the fair odds for the two teams are 1.43 and 6.67 respectively. If the punter is right, and the game could be played 100 times, a 13/2 bet on Sunderland each time would, on average, return 12.50 profit from 100 1 stakes. By contrast, backing Liverpool at 4/11 would, on average, lose him 4.55. He might believe that Liverpool should win each time, but in this case so does the bookmaker, who has cut his odds. Equally, however, the bookmaker has underestimated the chance of a Sunderland win, offering odds that the good bettor considers, in this case, to represent value.

Since odds are just probabilities, this is really the only way to beat the bookmaker. A punter can back as many “winners” as he likes, but if he fails to take into account the bookmaker’s prices, it may not be enough to return a profit. There will always be some losers. Really, the argument about value betting is a hypothetical one. The “back winners, not losers” philosophy is itself inherently all about finding a betting edge. If a punter is finding winners and making a profit with them, it means simply that he is winning more bets than the bookmaker believes the punter ought to be winning, according to the odds the bookmaker had set. If this is the case, the punter has found value and established a betting edge, whether he quantitatively set out to do so or just followed his hunches. Successful betting, then, is really all about understanding and managing probabilities. Know the true chances of a sporting win, and there may be profitable opportunities waiting at the bookmakers. As Geoff Harvey says in his book Successful Football Betting, “Find the value, [and] the winners will take care of themselves.”

The importance of value betting

If the bookmaker’s odds are unfair, how can a punter ever win? Given the disadvantage the over round imposes, it is no surprise that as many as 95% of gamblers fail to win at fixed odds sports betting over the long term. There is no denying that most bookmakers, particularly the well-established firms, are very good at setting prices, estimating the true chance of sporting results and locking in a profit margin.

Nevertheless, sports are not statistically quantifiable, in the sense that cards or other forms of casino gambling are, where simple laws of probability govern the outcome of games like blackjack, roulette and craps. I know that I have a 1/37 chance of landing a number 36 on a European roulette wheel (1/38 chance on an American wheel). But how can I know what the true probability is of Ronnie O’Sullivan winning the world snooker championship again? And if I think I know what his chances are, how can I be sure that my estimate is more accurate than the bookmaker’s?

Unfortunately, the answers to these questions only come with time and experience, by acquiring a “knowledge” of a sport and its betting market, and a familiarity with the way bookmakers set their odds. The good news, however, is that whilst bookmakers are very good at setting odds for sporting events, they, like punters, can make mistakes, sometimes very glaring ones, which knowledgeable bettors will snap up without a moment’s hesitation.

William Hill, for example, astonishingly offered 200/1 on Primoz Peterka, the back-in-form Slovenian ski jumper, to win the opening ski jumping World Cup competition of the 2002/03 season at Kuusamo, Finland, despite the fact that he had won the qualifying competition the night before, and had been double world champion in previous seasons. The true odds, by contrast, were likely to be nearer to 10/1, and most other bookmakers had priced accordingly. Peterka won, and William Hill ceased offering odds for the ski jumping World Cup thereafter. Of course, such large mistakes are relatively rare, but smaller pricing errors do and must exist to account for the few per cent of gamblers who are profiting regularly from fixed odds sports betting.

Punters differ in the methods they use to acquire a sports betting “knowledge”. Some like to adopt a more mathematical approach by using rating systems based on past performance to predict future outcomes. Others spend hours each week poring over sports journals and Internet sites to glean as much information as they can about a particular event, including news about the weather, and team or player injuries and morale. Still others base their judgement on a subjective feel for the forthcoming event, relying on an inkling or a hunch about what may happen. And finally there are punters who simply pay others to do the thinking for them, by subscribing to one or more sports advisory services.

Continued…