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Using football quotes to inform your betting Part Two
Continuing motivational, emotional, philosophical and passion filled quotes from soccer legends. Get more quotes for better football betting in Part Two.
Published on 30 November 2018
Updated on 30 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...
Hello, and welcome to part two of my guide to using football quotes to inform your betting. Before we get started, I'd highly encourage you to check out part one here
If you don't want to do that for some reason, here's a quick summary!
With some betting plans – like matched betting – the particulars of the bets you choose aren't too important. Most of the time, however, they are. Usually, you're relying on your own powers of prediction to pick winning bets.
Doing so is naturally tricky. There's a reason https://iwinsoccerbets.com/blog/bookies usually win out in the long term, after all. But, the more information you use to inform your predictions, the better chance they have of coming in.
That's why – in addition to reading the more analytical work of betting tipsters – I think it's extremely important to listen to people who have been directly involved in the game too. In part one, we looked at selected quotes from managers. This time, we're going to be using quotes from some of the premier players and pundits of recent generations.
Let's get started.
Useful quotes – the players
"Football is played with the head. Your feet are just the tools" – Andrea Pirlo
This is extremely similar to another rather famous player's quote, "You play football with your head, and your legs are there to help you." I already featured some of Cruyff's words in part one, though, so I'll give the credit here to another eminently quotable player!
The power of the mind over the body is a common theme in famous football quotes. It's also something that's extremely hard to quantify simply by using stats.
Mental fortitude can take teams a long way in football. Really, it's the great equalizer. It allows teams which are less talented on paper to still come out with a win.
Inter Milan's famous triumph over Barcelona in the 2010 Champions League semi-final is one of the most famous examples. Inter were undoubtedly a talented team… but they were going against one of the greatest teams to ever play the game. They ended up winning 3-2 on aggregate, and they deserved to win. They were mentally stronger than Barca.
Again, this is something which analytics can't really tell you. To gauge a team's mental strength, you need to know the players, the manager, how the team has performed in other high-pressure situations, and so on.
"I am constantly being asked about individuals. The only way to win is as a team. Football is not about one or two or three star players" – Pele
There's an obsession in modern football with the individual.
Perhaps it's driven by the enormous marketing campaigns of Nike, Adidas, and so on. Perhaps it's come from the incredible rise of FIFA (the video game, not the association) in popular culture. Quite simply, it's also a way to "sell" a match. For years, El Clasico was billed more as a showdown between Messi and Ronaldo than Barcelona vs Real Madrid.
Whatever the reason, it's ridiculously misleading. Always remember that football is an 11vs11 game. If a team has a great striker and a tricky winger, but the back line is a shambles, they're not going to win consistently. Likewise, if you've got peak Buffon in goal but 2017-18's Christian Benteke up front, you're not going to get many victories.
When analyzing a matchup, don't just look at the big names. Assess the form and quality of the whole team, one to 11.
"Maybe they hate me because I am too good" – Cristiano Ronaldo
So, with all that said… individuals do still matter, of course.
For the most part, football is simply about doing your job, and doing the simple things correctly. But, there's a reason why top players are top players. It's because they have that rare ability to single-handedly turn a game around. Certain players, like Messi and the ever-humble CR7, even manage to do this consistently.
This isn't to say that you should disregard the previous quote entirely. I'd never bet on a game just because they had one incredible player. It should certainly be built into your prediction, though.
"Aggression is what I do. I go to war. You don't contest football matches in a reasonable state of mind" – Roy Keane
In some ways, this ties into both the Pirlo and Ronaldo quotes. It's partly linked to the idea of mental fortitude, and partly to the power that an individual can sometimes exercise.
Specifically, though, this one's all about leadership. As well as being one of the best players the Premier League has ever seen, Roy Keane is regarded as perhaps one of the greatest leader's to have played within English football. Even now, Gary Neville still regularly refers back to the influence that Keane had over his team.
There's always a temptation to follow the glamour stats in football – goals first, assists second… and everything else a long way behind. Yes, this helps you to find the best goalscorers and the most creative players, but it certainly doesn't help you to find the leaders.
Arguably, though, leaders are just as important to final results – particularly over the course of a long season. Leaders can keep the team tactically aligned, boost the confidence of their teammates, inspire them through tough times, and so on. Again, these are intangible benefits, but vitally important qualities which you can only gauge by watching the games.
"In football, the good thing is things can change in a second" – Didier Drogba
Okay, so this isn't the most poetic of quotes… but you get the point!
I wanted to include this one because it relates to something very important about a gambler's mentality. Football's unpredictability – which Drogba is referencing here – is one of the reasons why it's so popular. For bettors, though, it's just about the most frustrating thing in the entire world.
You can do all the analysis and preparation you like, reach a smart, logical conclusion… and still lose your bet in one freakish moment.
It happens, to absolutely everyone. The important thing is to remember that you're playing the long game in betting, and your luck will balance out over time. A 90th minute goal might lose you a bet this week, but next week, or three weeks from now, a 90th minute goal will win you a bet.
Accept football's unpredictability, and accept the ups and downs it causes you. If you can, separate your emotions entirely from what you're doing. Just concentrate on conducting diligent analysis, making the right picks, and – in the long run – things should go your way.
Useful quotes – the pundits
"With good coaching, proper motivation and the right club structure with organic growth, you can achieve an awful lot in football" – Gary Neville
Like most viewers, I'm a big fan of Gary Neville's punditry. Specifically, I like that he doesn't just look at the players, and what happens on the pitch. He also views football on a more macro level, which is exactly what he's doing in this quote.
A football club's medium-to-long term success is determined by more than just its starting XI at any one time. Neville has listed things like quality coaching and having the right structure in place here. Along with a number of other factors, these play into the overall identity of the club as a whole.
Some clubs are set up for stability. Southampton might have struggled in recent times, for example, but their excellent club structure has helped them to stay in the Premier League for a long time, on a limited budget and with plenty of managerial upheaval.
Others have more of a short-term, "win now" mentality, in which the manager is never safe and we see dramatic rises and falls in transfer activity. Sometimes, as in Chelsea's case, this works. Often, though, it sees the club relegated.
This kind of zoomed-out approach might not help you in a one-off, individual match. However, when you're looking at longer-term bets, such as which teams will get relegated, which teams will finish in the European spots, and so on – it's extremely important.
"Football is a simple game. 22 men chase a ball for 90 minutes, and at the end the Germans always win" – Gary Lineker
This is an excellent quote, from one of the more eloquent voices in football punditry. Whilst it's obviously light-hearted, it does also contain an important nugget of truth.
I touched on this in part one, but it bears repeating. Certain teams simply have an aura of near-invincibility about them. That can help them win the mental game before they've even stepped foot on the pitch. As Lineker references, the German national team had this aura for years. Fergie's Manchester United are the perfect example from club football, in the Premier League at least.
This is another factor which analytics can't truly help you with, but which is extremely important regardless.
"You can't win anything with kids" – Alan Hansen
Well, I'm sure you could've guessed this one would make an appearance!
Hansen made this quote in 1995 about a Manchester United team featuring Beckham, Giggs, Scholes, the Nevilles and Butt, all of whom were 21 or under. That team, of course, did indeed go on to win the title… and four of the next five titles too.
I've actually included this quote here as a warning, that you should never put too much stock in one pundit's opinion.
A good pundit will always sound completely confident in everything they say. They're paid to share their opinions, after all. That does not, however, mean that they'll be right! However eloquent or experienced the pundit, remember what they're saying is only their opinion, not fact.
So, there you have it – a selection of quotes from three of the most important groups of football experts, along with a guide to how they can improve your football betting.
Above all else, remember that the more information you have, the better your predictions will be. Statistical information is certainly important, but you must also generally immerse yourself in the culture of football.
Oh, and actually watching the games helps too, of course!
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