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What do soccer fans need to know before their next each way bet?
Sometimes we simply look at the bookmaker odds before choosing each way bets. Find out how to know your returns before your selection wins or places.
Published on 20 March 2019
Updated on 20 March 2019
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The constant International breaks within a domestic soccer league season got me thinking about how you can ensure your bets contain less risk, which may help you relax more during fulltime match results.
You do not require a massive multiple or an unrealistic acca with long shots to get excited about a match, but if you want to wager some money on international tournaments, such as the FIFA World Cup or the UEFA Nations League, then you may want to know more about tournament and league outcomes rather than just looking at selections on a match-by-match basis.
There are other ways to place bets and each-way betting is an interesting approach to reduce your risk while maintaining a significant uplift with a correctly chosen winning selection.
It would not be a good betting exercise if you preferred a long-shot selection, which has extremely high odds and therefore, an extremely high implied probability when that selection wins.
Or put more simply, an each-way bet can sometimes be like betting on an underdog, which wins the football match with the last kick of the game, deep into time added on. Saving your wager and providing an exhilarating experience at the same time.
However, I thought you might benefit by hearing some of the pros and cons surrounding this betting strategy, but I will delve into more detail around the potential pitfalls, which may help you navigate some of the common mistakes.
Reducing betting liability using Each Way bets
Each way betting is useful for multi-team competitions and tournaments where there are a lot of potential winners. Some of the obvious examples are the UEFA Champions League, domestic Cup/League competitions and World Cups.
However, if you’re also looking to place bets against an overall league competition, such as any of the national domestic leagues, each way betting could also be useful within these situations. Each way betting works by reducing the potential upside by almost insuring your bet against total loss under certain conditions.
In sports, such as football, this usually means each way bets are settled based on a team to ‘place’ within the competition; usually based on the top two spots within most tournaments. However, this may go as low as the top four depending on the bookmaker and/or the tournament.
Why would you want to pursue each way bets?
Sometimes you can use each way bets to make a judgement call on the best selections given the available odds, expected value and the possible risk.
Risks of each way betting over the long-term
Each way betting is not always 100% straightforward, as the ongoing returns from each way bets may not be enough to maintain long-term profitability.
Each way returns effectively reduce your probable returns by altering the effective odds and therefore, the implied probability of the event. This is sometimes presented in terms of covering (or insuring) your losses and helping your wager to remain within the betting competition for a longer period.
At the end of the day, keeping your bet alive when it seems that your selection will not win the tournament is much more exciting than simply losing your money!
How to calculate each way betting returns
If we try a quick example, we can understand how each way bets work and how much profit you could make from each way betting transactions.
As describe above, each way returns are based on the win and the place. Each individual bet requires 50% of your stake; half of your wager is placed against the selection occurring and the other half is wagered against the higher performing places.
Naturally, this means you must weigh up the potential returns if you were to be successful and the possibility of using this method as an insurance bet, if your selection was to place rather than win.
If your wager is halved; first half wagered against the outright bet and the second half is wagered against the team or selection to place. This means you may have to consider doubling the original stake, if you want to meet your original ‘to win’ staking requirements.
For example, if you wanted to place a £10 each way bet for England to win the World Cup, this would require you to bet £20. Where £10 is wagered against the outcome; England to win the tournament and the second £10 is wagered against England finishing within the top positions.
However, it does not stop there, the bookmaker odds used would reduce for the place bet, this means your bet could be like the following:
£20 each way wager for England to win the world cup at 16.00 (or 17/1)
Results in the following two bets:
1. £10 on England to win at 16.00
2. £10 on England to place at quarter odds or 16.00 / 4 = 4.00
If England win the tournament, this would result in £10 x 16.00 = £160 return plus £10 x 4.00 = £40 return, whereas England to lose the final and finish second, would return you £10 x 4.00 = £40. Therefore, ensuring that you maintain a return from the selection.
How do each way bets compare to the other betting options?
In summary, there are many better options for managing risk, by choosing arbitrage or possible matched betting, but each way betting maintains the classic thrill of placing bets and providing lasting enjoyment.
However, it’s relatively easy to simply pick large odds selections and base each way bets on the higher returns due to halving the stake (i.e. for the outright and the places bets), but this is not always the best approach for long term bankroll protection.
Additionally, bookmaker odds do not signify what makes a good each way bet, as you’re only considering the odds and not the expected value based on the reduced outright betting returns. The expected value and your calculated edge is the only approach to make consistent betting profits when placing bets against each way selections.
Tags: betting strategy
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