Our website covers many great tips for betting Euro Cup, Euro 2012, Champions League betting and sports betting in general for the matter. In this article we’ll summarize the keys to winning at sports betting with links to more detailed articles on each point, and then introduce you to new strategy in the picking winners section. It is our hope this information will be used to make your betting season a more profitable one.
3 Keys to winning sports betting
#1 Bankroll Management – There is no more important concept to winning at sports betting than proper bankroll management. The reason most gamblers lose is simple: “they bet too much per game”. To give an example of this is let’s say someone offered you to bet on heads or tails coin flips and was willing to pay you $55 for every heads, and required you pay $45 on every tails. What most gamblers don’t realize is that if they bet 20% of their starting bankroll on each flip, despite the massive edge, there is a 99.98% chance they would go broke over a series of 500 bets. Even if you’re picking winners and betting with a massive edge you cannot win without proper bankroll management. For tips on this topic including how to set a starting bankroll and how to determine unit size read our article Bankroll Management.
#2 Shopping the Odds (Line Shopping) – The second most important concept to winning sport betting is always betting at the best odds possible. This concept is rather simple, if you load up 4-5 different online bookmaker websites (along with the Betfair.com betting exchange) and then look to see which has the best price on a team you’re about to bet, then you’ll be losing the least when you lose and winning the most when you win. This is as (if not more) important than picking winners, yet is a distant second to proper bankroll management which is the key of all keys. For more on line shopping read the info covered on our home page.
#3 Picking Winners – Those who are looking to bet sports as a source of income need a system for identifying value and locating profitable bets. As a recreational bettor you could get by just fine going with gut, reading news wires and betting your favorite teams. Chances are you won’t win using this strategy, but if you line shop and use good bankroll management you probably won’t lose much later. While actually capping games is a vast topic and our website designed for recreational bettors is not the right platform, we will conclude this article with some tips much more effective then “heads or tails” (random guesses) to finding value bets.
Top 5 Sports Betting Tips
Tip #1 Follow the Pros – There are many different odds services on the internet, many free. Do a Google search on “Soccer Odds” (as football searches will get you NFL results) to find a site that shows the odds at top online bookmakers. What we need to look for then in opening lines. When odds are first posted on a match up look and see how the odds change. If a team’s odds start getting worst this means early money in on that side and assuming the line hasn’t moved too much this is probably the right team to bet. Generally speaking, early money is smart money so you want to get bets down alongside the early bettors.
Tip #2 Follow the Steam – Rare occasions occur when well before game time the odds board starts going nuts, and every bookmaker starts changing their odds rapidly. When this happens you want to quickly get on the team the odds are getting worst for. There are two reasons this situation, called steam occur. The first is inside information which hasn’t been reported yet, such as key player having the flu. The first situation is rare because bookies are generally on top of those things. The more common reason steam action occurs is syndicate betting. Large well known winners have trouble getting down bets, because bookies don’t want to do business with them. What happens in order to both get down their bets and to circumvent betting limits a syndicate is used. This is a team of bettors all lined up to max bet a certain side across several different sports books all at the same time. This is generally the source of play, and when one of the top big dogs is on a side everyone wants to follow. Be careful though not to catch steam too late, when the bookies move their lines a lot the steam stops, bets come in on other sides and you might be left with a worst line from having followed the steam. Getting on steam early though is a great way to win.
Tip #3 Avoid Game Time – One should not confuse steam action with game time betting. Just before a game is about to start many recreational bettors start putting in their bets. If you see a big line move late in many cases you want to avoid this game as you should have been more prepared earlier and betting on the fly is never a good idea. Though if the day (or days) before the game you recognized there likely would be lots of game time action and would wait looking for a better line, then smart move you’re now thinking like a sharp.
Tip #4 Fade Betting – Perhaps one of the easiest ways to win at sports betting is to bet the opposite of the biggest loser you know. When you get a losers picks and then line shop extensively and use proper bankroll management, it is very hard to lose long term.
Tip #5 Think Like a Bookie – Betting from the prospective of a sports fan is never smart. If you feel a bookie is giving you excellent value on some bet, then take a step back and reanalyze the situation. I’ve had more success thinking “this is too good to be true” and then betting the opposite. Siding with the bookmaker and learning to think like a bookmaker and not a fan is a great overall strategy.
Our final word of advice more than 50% of all bets we place as betting professionals are done at Betfair.com. Betfair is a betting exchange offering much better odds than a traditional bookmaker. If you’re not using them you’re missing out, sign up now using this special link and you’ll be given a £25 risk free bet.