When to bet on soccer trends and when to ignore them

When to bet on soccer trends and when to ignore them

Betting on trends: arguments for

In most cases, it repeats what happened more often before. This concept applies to a huge number of markets in bookmakers’ offices: betting on pure outcomes and totals, fouls and shots on goal, corner kicks and so on.

To prove it, we wait for three consecutive identical outcomes, then bet on the fourth, when winning making a new bet “following the trend” (if losing stop “loading” on this trend). Here are the statistics of the passability of the bets made from the 4th to the 28th round of the APL (500 matches):

The average passability is 63.5% – if you play by this betting strategy passes two 2 bets out of three. The effect is enhanced when the teams are on the same side of interrelated trends. For example, when Arsenal began to concede a lot, and Liverpool began to score more than usual.

Betting on trends: arguments “against”

Any series will come to an end sooner or later.

This is true, but until then you will have time to make a good profit on the trend (if we are talking about the long term). In the example we stopped betting at the first loss, but if we made another bet “downstream”, it would be more often successful than losing. So if you found a steady trend, but the first bet was unsuccessful – don’t get upset, it might be worth to bet again.

A trend is not a trend

A proper match analysis requires a complex evaluation: you can’t look at the statistics for wins and losses, goals scored and conceded, shots and xG statistics separately. Only the interaction of several trends will show the real picture.

The task is more difficult if the teams follow the opposite directions of the interrelated trends. For example, if Team A, which has scored 3 goals in 3 consecutive matches, plays away with Team B, which has not missed a single goal for the same 3 matches, the bet on the visitors’ individual total turns into a “guessing game” – it is better to skip this match.

Influence of values and movements of odds

Here we can partially agree – with a 60% passability of bets you have to keep the average odds not lower than 1.67 (which does not happen, for example, in home matches of favorites). However, there are stable trends for outsiders. Underdogs in good form can extend the series in matches against top clubs.

It is impossible to follow trends blindly: you have to analyze each trend separately. Only by looking for the well-trends with the necessary mean odds and probability the balance is maintained.

Betting against the trend

With the right analysis, it is possible to find overvalued series that are about to break. Again, a comprehensive statistical analysis will help. Here’s an example from the APL.

Statistically modest Burnley lost only once in 10 consecutive matches (from the 3rd to the 12th round) – to the cosmic Manchester City. The trend and good odds were predisposed to bet on the maroon side, but it was not worth it. The advanced statistics screamed of Burnley’s weakness. Here are just some of the statistical feats of Sean Dyche’s team from rounds 3 to 12:

  • Last place in the expected goals model (0.59 xG per game vs. 1.3 team average);
  • “Burnley” conceded 6 goals, the fewest in the league, but ranked 7th from last in xG (average of 1.4 xGA per game), “under-performing” by at least 6-7 goals;
  • no one allowed more shots (179, second place has 21 fewer shots);
  • only West Bromwich hit less frequently than Burnley (91 shots).

Now the Bordeaux are paying the price for excessive luck in the first half of the season – the team’s current streak is 11 games without a win (and according to the xG model, the team should be in the relegation zone). This example confirms that sometimes you have to bet against the trends.

There are other examples. The most recent is Manchester City’s 18-match winning streak. Surely many bankrolls “caught up” to zero, playing on Martingale against the “citizens”. In fact, Guardiola’s team was stronger than the opponent in each of the matches, including showing the best performance in:

  • shots on goal – on others’ and allowed on their own;
  • shots on goal (also in both directions);
  • the model of expected goals (xG and xGA) – only once “MS” played with the opponent on equal terms on xG.

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