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Using football quotes to inform your betting Part One
Motivational, emotional, philosophical and passion filled quotes from soccer legends, which may improve your football betting analysis and match selections
Published on 24 November 2018
Updated on 24 November 2018
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...
Thanks partly to the massive rise of on-the-go betting, and simply to the rise of the internet before that, football betting has never been so popular. Hundreds of thousands, if not millions of fans put down wagers each weekend, and the numbers are only getting bigger. Betting has truly become an integral part of football culture.
Inevitably, this rise in football betting has also led to a rise in the number of football tipsters out there. There's nothing wrong with that, of course. In fact, successful bettors being willing to share their tips with the wider public should be welcomed.
The problem comes, however, when you only listen to one tipster, or to the same few people.
When making a prediction in any walk of life, you generally want to have as much information as possible. And that's all football bets are, really - soccer predictions. Naturally, therefore, the more information you have, and the wider your range of sources, the more successful you'll be.
Different approaches to analysis
In this article, I want to concentrate on a source that I think has actually become undervalued. That is the opinion of people who are, or who have been, directly involved in the game.
Players, pundits and managers have a level of insight into football that no betting tipster - however successful they are - could hope to match. They've usually played it themselves, often to an extremely high level.
Does this make their analysis and predictions "better" than those of online tipsters? Not necessarily. I do believe, however, that they offer a different view on things.
Specifically, online tipsters usually focus on the analytical side of the game. They tend to value statistics above all else. There's nothing wrong with that, of course. I think soccer betting statistics are incredibly important, and are a cornerstone of any successful betting strategy.
They are not the be-all and end-all, though.
A deeper understanding of the game
In order to understand football, and therefore make more accurate betting predictions, I truly believe you need to take a holistic, rounded approach. You shouldn't just look at the stats.
Most importantly, you need to understand why those statistics are occurring in the first place. For example, let's say a team is regularly scoring fewer goals than its xG (expected goals) suggests it should. Why is that happening? Is it a tactical reason? Is it a loss of confidence? Have they simply been unlucky?
If you can understand why a statistic is occurring, then you can also start to predict whether or not it will continue. If a team has simply been unlucky, that luck will almost certainly correct itself over a long domestic season. If the team has lost its confidence, however, than that's less likely to change, barring something like a managerial switch or a series of transfers.
You can try to figure this stuff out for yourself, of course… but why not let better-informed people do it for you instead?
These are the kinds of areas in which pundits thrive, as they can break down the game with an expert's eye. Players and managers can also offer you a level of insight into the emotional side of the game which you can't get anywhere else.
Again, I want to make this very clear. I do not think either type of analysis, or either type of analyst, is necessarily more valuable than the other. I think you need to listen to both. With the more rounded insight that you'll then acquire, you'll almost certainly make better predictions, and better bets.
Let's hear from the experts
And so, with all that said, I want to bring you a selection of football quotes. These have been carefully chosen, and should help with your analysis of the game.
We're going to look at quotes from three main groups of both current and former professionals: managers, players and pundits.
To clarify, I am 100% not saying these people had anything whatsoever to do with gambling! I'm simply suggesting that we can learn from what they've said about the beautiful game, and apply it to our own picks in the future.
Let's get started.
Useful quotes - the managers
"I find it terrible when talents are rejected based on computer stats. Based on the criteria at Ajax now I would have been rejected… My qualities - technique and vision - are not detectable by a computer" - Johan Cruyff
In part, this backs up what I was talking about above… but it carries a bit more weight coming from one of the biggest geniuses football has seen!
Statistical analysis can tell you a lot, but it can't tell you everything. On an individual level - as Cruyff is saying - there are extremely important qualities which are hard to appreciate using stats.
The same is true on a wider, team-oriented scale. Things like confidence, momentum, and being comfortable with the tactical system - to name but a few - can't really be shown on a computer.
In short, it's all well and good gathering tons of stats. But, to make truly informed predictions… you still need to watch the games.
"Players lose you games, not tactics. There's so much crap talked about tactics by people who barely know how to win at dominoes" - Brian Clough
This one comes from another historical titan of the game. Brian Clough managed to steer Nottingham Forest to domestic success and consecutive European Cups… so it's fair to say he knows what he's talking about.
I like this quote because it helps us to see through the noise. In the build-up to every big game, people love to focus on tactics - who the starting XI will be, the formation each team will line up in, how Manager X plans to deal with Player Y, and so on.
This quote reminds us that, when all's said and done, one factor stands head-and-shoulders above the others when it comes to the outcome of a match: sheer talent. There's absolutely no substitute for it.
Often, you can overcomplicate football predictions. Anything can happen in any given game, of course. That's one of the reasons we love football so much. But when it comes down to it - regardless of who the manager is or what their tactics are - the more talented set of players will usually win. It's as simple as that.
"People say, 'Pep won in Barca, but it was boring,' or, 'Pep won in Bayern, but it was boring.' I understand that. But games won, goals scored, goals conceded, titles... sorry, guys, it was good!" - Pep Guardiola
Pep's produced a whole lot of memorable quotes during his decade-plus as a top level manager. In terms of providing illumination for bettors, though, few of them trump this one.
Similarly to Brian Clough's aforementioned quote, I think this one's helpful in getting us to focus on what really matters, and ignore what doesn't.
People - whether they're professional pundits or wannabe pundits on Twitter - love to talk about things like style. If you're watching football as a fan, and you're committing 90 minutes of your time to a match, then you want to be entertained, right?
The thing is, if your priority is making accurate predictions… those kinds of things don't actually matter. There are no bets you can win based on style, or excitement, or any other abstract concept. All your bets are based on certain tangible events happening. That could be a certain team winning, a certain number of goals being scored, and so on.
As Pep's suggesting here, you need to be able to separate yourself from ideas like "exciting" and "boring" football. Instead, you must focus on what's actually happened, and what could therefore happen in the future.
"Only true champions come out and show their worth after defeat, and I expect us to do that" - Sir Alex Ferguson
Come on, you knew there had to be a Fergie quote in here somewhere!
Predictions are hard. There's a reason that bookies stay in business. But, the more factors you incorporate into your analysis - based on both cold, hard facts and the more emotional side - the better the chances of your bets coming off.
What Fergie's talking about here is an intangible quality. His Manchester United teams were "true champions". They had an aura about them. It would be hard to define that aura in stats, but every person watching their games always expected them to win. This affected their opposition, and gave Man U a mental edge innumerable times.
In short, they had an identity. Contemporary teams do too. They have reputations which absolutely affect their opposition. These identities can't be measured by stats - you can only understand them through watching the games, and reading and watching analysis. In order to be a successful long-term bettor, you need to immerse yourself in the world of football.
(Oh, and for the record, Man U went on to win their next seven games in a row after this quote was made.)
That concludes part one of our selection of useful quotes to help your football betting. Check back soon for part two, in which we'll look at quotes from players and pundits.
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