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Can you trust bookmaker odds?

Learn how bookmakers reduce odds against you. Find out how to recognise it before you lose money on your next bet.



Published on
Updated on 20 September 2018
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Betting Tips for Today's Football

Find more value in your next football bet. You could gain a betting edge by checking out the tips and stats for today's and tomorrow's fixtures...


What do you do when you place bets?

You probably do the same as most of us…


Simply look around for the best odds across many websites, maybe you use an odds comparison website and you find the bookmaker offering the most attractive odds for your wager.

What if the bookmaker odds are unrealistic?


If the bookmaker offers unrealistic odds on selections, it simply means you must ensure there is enough benefit for the increased risk. The risk is increased as the odds are reduced, which provides a reduced return and therefore, reduced expected value on each selection.


If we look at the differences between the bookmaker odds and the true odds, we can easily visualise how bookmakers may be hiding the true odds of each event from us.


The table below shows the difference between the bookmaker odds and the true odds:


Now if you take a close look at the table, you can see the red cells indicate where the average bookmaker odds values are below the true odds for that specific outcome.


It’s most evident with the home win advantage, as this is the most probable event for any soccer match. This means that the bookmakers reduce the odds for the most likely event and therefore, decrease your ability to maintain your bankroll with easy home win favourites.


If you understand that bookmakers on average reduce the Home Win odds, you know there is the capability for someone to find more expected value and create a betting strategy within the Away Win and Draw selections, as on average the bookmakers increase the Draw/Away Win odds to compensate for the reduced Home Win odds.


Take the time to review your selections before you place a bet to make sure that you’re making selections on not just the best odds, but the best options, which contain the least bookmaker vig/juice on each event.


I hope this helps you understand the selection process a little better.


Good Luck!



Tags: Bookmakers

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