Champions League: Matchday 1 – Roundup

Matchday 1 results

Roma v CSKA Moscow – CSKA to win @ 7 with Bet365 – Lost (5-1) -1

Bayern Munich v Manchester City – Man City +0.75 @ 2.06 with Bet Victor – Lost/Void (1-0) -0.5

Benfica v Zenit – Zenit 0.5 @ 1.95 with Bet365 – WIN (0-2) +0.95

Moncao v Bayer Leverkusen – Monaco to win @ 3.4 with Bet365 – WIN (1-0) +2.4

Dortmund v Arsenal – Arsenal to win @ 4.33 with Bet365 – LOSE (2-0) -1

5 bets, 2 wins, 5pts staked, +0.85pts


A good start and probably a bit of luck with Zent beating Porto and playing most of the game against 10 men but also slightly unlucky Man City did not hold on for a draw.

Champions League: Matchday 1 (Wednesday)

Decent start yesterday and will do the summary after the first round of matches.

Wednesday’s bets and all these bets will be 1pt

Roma v CSKA Moscow – CSKA to win @ 7 with Bet365

Bayern Munich v Manchester City – Man City +0.75 @ 2.06 with Bet Victor

Results from Tuesday

Benfica v Zenit – Zenit 0.5 @ 1.95 with Bet365 – WIN (0-2) +0.95

Moncao v Bayer Leverkusen – Monaco to win @ 3.4 with Bet365 – WIN (1-0) +2.4

Dortmund v Arsenal – Arsenal to win @ 4.33 with Bet365 – LOSE (2-0)

Champions League: Matchday 1

Successfully had bets on the Champions League over the past few seasons based on an idea of the countries playing each other.


Tuesday’s bets and all these bets will be 1pt

Benfica v Zenit – Zenit 0.5 @ 1.95 with Bet365

Moncao v Bayer Leverkusen – Monaco to win @ 3.4 with Bet365

Dortmund v Arsenal – Arsenal to win @ 4.33 with Bet365


User question: Betting on total corners

I  received a question the other day from a user who wanted to know how to use the stats for total corners betting. Rather than answer him directly I am adding the answer to the blog and this is something I will do in the future as well. He asked

“Any bets i would make would be over a certain amount of corners say 9 for example. So the kind of stats i was looking for was previous mayches between lets say Liverpool & Southampton who were playing today. So what i would be looking for would be previous matches between these two, how many corners were there? How many corners liverpool have in home games and southampton away. This gives me a base to make a prediction. What im basically looking to know, does this site have these stats?”

The short answer is yes we do have these stats. At the moment we don’t have historical corner accounts for matches just between these two teams at the moment. For example we can’t see the last 4 or 5 seasons that these teams played and the corner counts. However, I do have this information and this is something I will add to the page.

For total corners you have a few sections you can look at on the site. Tonight Chelsea play against Burnley and if you visit the corner console and set the season to Prev Only then we get all last season’s stats.

corner stats image

Top section of corner stats page

If we look at the section above we can see the top section with the data fron last season for both these teams. The summary boxes at the top give you the top line stats. So we can see that last season Chelsea away matches averaged 11.7 corners and this is similar to Burnley home matches that averaged 11.8 corners. For what it’s worth in a game like this with a big 4 team I would not be too interested in the stats of their opposition as more than likely the game will be controlled and dictated by Chesea.

The match by match section shows the totals in graphical form. This gives you a chance to see any games that are really high or really low and might have changed the average a lot. For example if you look at the Chelsea line (if you click in the key where it says Burnley match total it will remove this line and leave you just with Chelsea) you can see the three highest totals were 18 vs Man City and 17 away at Swansea and Liverpool. Interesting that two of their highest totals game away at the two teams that finished above them. That would indicate they have higher counts against better teams.

If you want to check any stats for a match you can look in the matches section and then click on the + sign at the end of any match and the statistics will appear in the middle. In the example above the match for Chelsea away at Cardiff has been clicked and you can see the corner totals in there.

Asian total corners boxes for total corner bettings

Asian total corners boxes for total corner betting

The main section for checking total corners and getting an idea of the odds needed is the ASIAN TOTAL CORNERS section which is shown above. You can move up and down this section and see how the lines look. Above I have looked at the 11 and 11.5 line. The Asian Handicap differs slightly from just total corners as there are only 2 outcomes. For example for this match Bet365 have the Asian Total Corners line at 11 and the price is 1.9 for over 11 and 1.9 for under 11. If the total corners for the match was 11 then you would have your stake returned. If we look at the line being 11 and Chelsea’s stats last season we can see that they played matches 19 matches away from home and in 7 of those they went under 11 corners and in 9 of those they went over 19 corners and in 3 they landed bang on 11 corners. In this case it would look like the over 11 line is better value as based on last seasons stats the equivalent price should be 1.78 but we can get 1.9 with Bet365. However, This is Chelsea against a small team and I would want to take that into account. For example if we exclude matches against the other teams in the top 4 we are left with 16 matches and in those 16 matches 7 were under 11 corners, 6 were over 11 corners and 3 were exactly spot on 11 corners.  So if we then look at games that were under 11 corners we have 7/13 matches (ignore the 3 draws in an Asian Handicap) which is 53.8% and equivalent to odds of 1.86 so pretty much what Bet365 offer with a tiny bit of value.

For the total corner line (not asian) if you wanted to back under 11 corners then it’s 7/16 matches which is around 43.5% and equivalent to odds of 2.29 but Bet365 only offer you a price of evens in the corners market on Over 11 corners. They offer 8.5 (15/2) on exactly 11 corners and that could well be the best value of the 3 choices.

Hope this is useful and if you have any follow ups please post as a comment.


The early goal catches the worm (Betting School)

Another Betting School article. This time one I originally wrote in April 2013. This one looks at goal times and the impact of an early goal.

The early goal catches the worm


I was struggling through Osasuna v Atletico Madrid and trying to find things to do other than watch the match when a goal was scored. The goal was scored in the 35th minute and I wondered what the likelihood of more goals was. Before the goal I had looked at the under 2.5 goal price and it was around 1.55 so goals certainly weren’t expected in large numbers.  Obviously this goal made over 2.5 more likely but was there a way of working out how much more likely?


I decided to do some research into it and that is what I am going the share with you. I have used the  site as they provide odds for matches and the goal times if you click on the link to any match. I always like to look at the major leagues so I have used the Premier League, La Primera in Spain , Serie A in Italy, the Bundesliga in Germany and the French Ligue 1. For all these leagues I have used data from this season. I also added the Championship as there is no doubt more interest in English leagues amongst the readership. This season is heading towards the finish line but there is a lot of football still played in the summer so I have used the MLS in America and the J-League in Japan. For these two leagues I have used data from last season which ran throughout 2012.


The main market to look at in all this is the over/under 2.5 goal market as this is the classic goal line. Let’s see on average how many games from each of these leagues are over/under 2.5 goals and how many matches are included for each league in this study.


Total Over 2.5 Under 2.5
League Season Games Games % Games %
Eng Champ 2012-13 453 238 53% 215 47%
Eng Prem 2012-13 296 168 57% 128 43%
French Ligue 1 2012-13 290 131 45% 159 55%
German Bundesliga 2012-13 234 124 53% 110 47%
Italy Serie A 2012-13 288 141 49% 147 51%
Japan J-League 2012 306 158 52% 148 48%
Spain La Primera 2012-13 280 148 53% 132 47%
USA MLS 2012 323 165 51% 158 49%
Total 2470 1273 52% 1197 48%


Table 1. Number of matches for each league included in study and counts and percentages of games which were over or under 2.5 goals


Looking at the table the first thing that stands out is the number of games in the Premier League that have been over 2.5 goals.  I have no idea why, but would presume this is a blip as it is way ahead of all the other leagues. If you remove the Premier League and France from the data then all the rest are pretty consistent lying between 49% and 53%. The average is 52% across all these leagues and I always think this demonstrates why over/under 2.5 goals works so well in betting as the line is so close to 50%. You can see prices for the coming matches on the Bet365 website.


We want to look at the time of the first goal and see how that impacts on the over/under market; so let’s first look at the times of the first goal across the leagues  to get an idea of when it occurs. The results are shown in table 2.


League 0-10 11-20 21-30 31-40 41-50 51-60 61+ 0-0
Eng Champ 18% 20% 14% 11% 10% 8% 13% 6%
Eng Prem 22% 19% 11% 13% 8% 7% 11% 9%
French Ligue 1 16% 19% 12% 14% 10% 8% 14% 8%
German Bundesliga 25% 14% 17% 14% 12% 4% 7% 8%
Italy Serie A 20% 17% 13% 10% 8% 9% 15% 8%
Japan J-League 19% 19% 11% 11% 12% 7% 14% 8%
Spain La Primera 22% 19% 17% 9% 7% 6% 13% 6%
USA MLS 21% 21% 11% 6% 10% 7% 16% 7%
Total 20% 19% 13% 11% 10% 7% 13% 7%


Table 2. Time of the first goal in matches, grouped in 10 minute brackets, as a percentage of the total matches


I was surprised by how many matches feature an early goal. Across all leagues on average 1 in 5 matches has a goal before the 10th minute. It feels like I never watch these matches, that’s for sure. The Bundesliga produces some odd figures having the highest percentage in the 0-10 bracket and the lowest in 11-20 but they probably average out like the others if you looked at 0-20 as a whole. If we know there are quite a lot of early goals let’s look at the 4 brackets from 0-40 minutes and see what impact the goal has on the over 2.5 goal expectancy.  The results are shown in table 3.


All 0-10 11-20 21-30 31-40
League O U O U O U O U O U
Eng Champ 53% 47% 75% 25% 71% 29% 75% 25% 55% 45%
Eng Prem 57% 43% 83% 17% 75% 25% 58% 42% 57% 43%
French Ligue 1 45% 55% 67% 33% 65% 35% 57% 43% 51% 49%
Ger’ Bundesliga 53% 47% 69% 31% 67% 33% 60% 40% 63% 38%
Italy Serie A 49% 51% 71% 29% 67% 33% 70% 30% 43% 57%
Japan J-League 52% 48% 90% 10% 72% 28% 62% 38% 46% 54%
Spain La Primera 53% 47% 74% 26% 66% 34% 69% 31% 42% 58%
USA MLS 51% 49% 71% 29% 72% 28% 68% 32% 45% 55%
Total 52% 48% 75% 25% 70% 30% 66% 34% 51% 49%


Table 3. Breakdown of matches which have over or under 2.5 goals based on the time the goal was scored. Goals are grouped in 10 minute brackets and ‘All’ is included to allow comparison.


Very interesting and some possible angles that could be exploited.  It is no surprise that if there is a goal in the first 10 minutes of a match  the likelihood of the game going over 2.5 goals is greatly increased. If we look at all matches the average is that it happens in 75% of matches, so if you got to the 10th minute of a match and a goal had been scored then you would want to be backing over 2.5 goals at a price better than 1.33 to get some value. I calculated that by converting 75% to decimal odds (1/0.75).


My view is that by using the odds required we can get a much better picture of the jump that occurs in the 10 minute brackets and this is shown in table 4.


Percentage Equivalent Odds
Minute Over Under Over Under
0-10 75% 25% 1.33 4.01
11-20 70% 30% 1.43 3.31
21-30 66% 34% 1.52 2.93
31-40 51% 49% 1.96 2.05
41-50 52% 48% 1.91 2.1
51-60 38% 62% 2.64 1.61


Table 4. Equivalent odds based on the percentages of matches that go over or under 2.5 goals based on the time bracket of the first goal


The table above shows very well the big drops in the percentage of games that go over 2.5 goals if a goal is not scored before the 30th minute, and then again after the 50th minute. I have charted the results as well in figure 1 to allow further analysis.


Figure 1. Line chart showing percentage of games over 2.5 goals based on time of 1st goal.


I wanted to visualise this data to see if it is easier to see the change, as from the table it looks to be steady but then dips drastically. In figure 1, I grouped the minutes in pairs (1-2, 3-4 etc) to lessen the spikes in the chart. The chart shows a steady gradual decline to just before the 30th minute and then there does seem to be a drop. The bigger and more clear drop is the next one just after half time and therefore the chances of over 2.5 occurring drops steeply after half time.


We have some basic facts but then there are some factors we should probably consider, such as if the team that scores first is the home team or the away team. In table 5, I have produced the same figures we have in table 3 but broken down by if the home team or the away team scored first.


All 0-10 11-20 21-30 31-40
League 1st O U O U O U O U O U
Eng Champ Hm 60% 40% 86% 14% 78% 22% 64% 36% 52% 48%
Aw 52% 48% 63% 37% 63% 37% 82% 18% 58% 42%
Eng Prem Hm 67% 33% 91% 9% 79% 21% 67% 33% 50% 50%
Aw 58% 42% 75% 25% 72% 28% 50% 50% 63% 37%
French Ligue 1 Hm 54% 46% 54% 46% 68% 32% 77% 23% 53% 47%
Aw 45% 55% 81% 19% 63% 38% 45% 55% 50% 50%
German Bundesliga Hm 60% 40% 74% 26% 67% 33% 53% 47% 53% 47%
Aw 55% 45% 58% 42% 67% 33% 64% 36% 71% 29%
Italy Serie A Hm 65% 35% 76% 24% 73% 27% 79% 21% 67% 33%
Aw 42% 58% 64% 36% 61% 39% 61% 39% 28% 72%
Japan J-League Hm 54% 46% 84% 16% 74% 26% 77% 23% 29% 71%
Aw 57% 43% 96% 4% 70% 30% 52% 48% 57% 43%
Spain La Primera Hm 63% 37% 83% 17% 81% 19% 85% 15% 36% 64%
Aw 51% 49% 65% 35% 50% 50% 57% 43% 50% 50%
USA MLS Hm 60% 40% 81% 19% 77% 23% 69% 31% 50% 50%
Aw 50% 50% 61% 39% 66% 34% 67% 33% 42% 58%
Total Hm 60% 40% 80% 20% 75% 25% 71% 29% 49% 51%
Aw 51% 49% 70% 30% 64% 36% 62% 38% 53% 47%


Table 5. Breakdown of matches which have over or under 2.5 goals based on the time the goal was scored and by which team. Goals are grouped in 10 minute brackets and ‘All’ is included to allow comparison.


The table is a little busy but if you start with the total line you immediately get a feel of what happens. If the home team score first then the likelihood of there being more goals is much more likely.


If the home team scores first before the 10th minute then in 8/10 matches the game goes on to have over 2.5 goals. Compare this to the away team scoring before the 10th minute and this drops to 7/10. Thinking of the equivalent decimal odds it would mean you would need on average odds of over 1.42 (1/0.7) on over 2.5 goals if the away team scored but just 1.25 (1/0.8) if the home team scores; and that is a big difference. Even if the home team scores between the 11th and 20th minutes there is still a 75% chance of over 2.5 goals.


I just want to have one more dig into this data and will stick with the home teams but group them in terms of odds.  I have made 4 brackets for the home team price which is less than 1.5, 1.5 to 1.99, 2-2.99, 3-3.99 and 4+.


0-10 11-20 21-30 31-40
Odds O U O U O U O U
<1.5 95% 5% 88% 12% 88% 13% 100% 0%
1.5-1.99 81% 19% 75% 25% 68% 32% 47% 53%
2.0-2.99 77% 23% 73% 27% 70% 30% 53% 47%
3.0-3.99 74% 26% 69% 31% 67% 33% 38% 62%
4+ 76% 24% 79% 21% 75% 25% 21% 79%
Total 80% 20% 75% 25% 71% 29% 49% 51%


Table 6. Breakdown of matches which have over or under 2.5 goals when the home team scores first based on  time the goal was scored and the pre-match odds of home team.


I grouped all the matches together to give a bigger sample size. Again there is the clear drop off as you pass the 30th minute and this is even more pronounced when the away team has a bigger price.


It is interesting in this group that in the matches where the home team was priced below 1.5 and they scored anytime before the 40th minute then over 90% (64 out of the 70 matches) were over 2.5 goals. This is a small sample but there looks likely to be a fair few goals even if the home favourite takes a while to get going.


Hopefully this will give you some added insight when a goal goes in. Thinking about the time that is was scored and by which team should enable you to make a decent decision on whether to back over or under 2.5 goals.

WC2014 day 32 – The morning after

Yesterdays results


Results not added

09.07.2014 – Netherlands v Argentina – DRAW @ 3.21 with Pinnacle WON +2.21

5/26 :: -9.19

I have been on the move the last few days and was unable to add to this. The final and 3rd/4th place playoff would have been draw selections I am pretty sure so they would have meant another points profit but overall disappointing. I’ll sum up properly in a few days and give the plans for the upcoming season.

WC2014 day 27 – The morning after

Bit of a turn up yesterday and not to be said about it.

Yesterdays results

08.07.2014 – Brazil v Germany – DRAW @ 3.24 with Pinnacle LOST -1

4/25 :: -11.4

Todays bets

09.07.2014 – Netherlands v Argentina – DRAW @ 3.21 with Pinnacle

WC2014 day 26 – The morning after

Brazil are without Neymar and Thiago Silva and they are their two most important players. Last match Luis Gustavo was suspended but his loss was not an issue at all but this game is completely different. Maybe losing Neymar will mean the forwards take on more responsibility and step up but the problem has been the forwards have been poor so far. Hulk, Fred and Oscar have had plenty of playing time and have managed just 2 goals between them in 5 matches. David Luiz has scored as many goals as them. Thiago Silva is one of the best, or possibly the best, centre back in the world and a fantastic leader, organises the team and provides stability at the back. Replacing him with Dante is going to be very tough and they will look wobbly and nervous. Julio Cesar does not inspire that much confidence either and you could easily see them go a couple of goals behind due to dodgy errors.

The Germans have played well all tournament, aside from a period against Algeria and Ghana. They will punish any mistakes and probably have a fair amount of the ball. This Brazil team does not dominate possession as they have done in the past. A lot depends on the line-ups today as Big Phil probably needs to do some major re-thinking to get the best out of the team. Marcelo and Alves are both very good attackers and the team will need them more than ever. If they are stuck at the back defending one on one against one of the German wide players it is going to be a long day for them. Löw has had some excellent German teams and not done enough with them and again in this world cup seems to be changing his side too much. Bring in Klose against France did not work and if he goes with a more fluid forward line here I can see them winning quite easily.

Yesterdays results


4/24 :: -10.4

Todays bets

08.07.2014 – Brazil v Germany – DRAW @ 3.24 with Pinnacle

Pogba to become world’s best midfielder

Paul Pogba has used the World Cup in Brazil as opportunity to shine on the global stage and establish himself as one of the most talented young players in the sport.

The Juventus midfielder will be hoping to help his side win the competition for only the second time in their history, in which they are now just single figures to do so with Betfair.

In two years’ time France will host Euro 2016, and along with Pogba, should be at their peak. The 21-year old may possibly be the best midfielder in the world, if he continues to improve. Les Bleus could be a good bet to win that tournament in their own back yard, especially if they go all the way in Brazil as their odds will shorten with Betfair.

There have been comparisons with Pogba and his French compatriot Patrick Vieira due their height, however, the Juventus man is much better player with the ball at his feet.

After the World Cup, the Frenchman will have to make a big decision about his future as there are a number of clubs queuing up to put an offer on the table for his services. One of those interesting parties is thought to be Chelsea who won’t be put off by his £50 million price tag.

A move to the Blues would see him to return to England as he spent four years at Manchester United as a youngster. Limited first-team opportunities under Sir Alex Fergusons forced him out of Old Trafford, a decision the former United boss must regret, even to this day.

Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho is in the process of rebuilding a team at Stamford Bridge after their trophyless season last year. He has already added Cesc Fabregas to his squad but he won’t be afraid to spend more cash if he believed Pogba was interested in the move as it would be a smart investment for his club.

Juventus will be playing Champions League football next campaign where they can be backed with Betfair so a move is not necessary for Pogba to play at the highest level. A lot will depend on whether he fancies another shot at the Premier League or if he is currently happy in Italy. Mourinho has a good record of improving younger players so he may see the opportunity as a way of developing under the Portuguese coach.

WC2014 day 25 – The morning after

Keep picking the wrong draws.


Yesterdays results

05.07.2014 – Belgium v Argentina – DRAW @ 3.42 with Pinnacle LOST -1

4/24 :: -10.4

Todays bets