As this weekend sees the start of the 2011-12 German football season and many of my readers are from Germany, I am in the process of finishing my statistical evaluation of Bundesliga 1, and to give you an idea of the direction I’m taking here’s an example for today’s fixture Stuttgart vs. Schalke (Saturday, 6.8.2011).
Relative Strength of the Home & Away Team:
Quotient to indicate the relative ‘strength’ of the home and away teams: Ladbrokes Home odds (LBH) 2.37 divided by Ladbrokes Away odds (LBA) 2.80 = a quotient of 0.8464.
The table above shows the results of the last 5 seasons covering all of Stuttgart’s home games and backing or laying all the possible outcomes (back home, back draw, lay away, etc.). The figures are based on the historical odds of Ladbrokes multiplied by a factor of 1.1 (as the market odds in betting exchange sites such as Betfair and Betdaq tend to be approximately 10% higher than traditional back-bet-only bookmakers).
For example, if you had backed the draw with 10 € in all of Stuttgart’s home fixtures between 2006-2011, then the accumulated loss would have been 270.85 €, despite the 10% increased odds. Backing Stuttgart at home would have brought a nice profit overall, but not in the last two years.
Since the table shows relatively steady profits for only one outcome, laying the draw if Stuttgart plays at home, I will concentrate upon it for this article.
Stuttgart at Home: Lay The Draw
This table shows the various LBH/LBA quotient clusters for laying the draw in Stuttgart’s home matches.
Before I continue, please read this refresher:
- Odds are computed using the following formula: 1 divided by the probability
- VALUE is calculated by comparing the ‘fair’ odds (own computation) with the ‘market’ odds.
The first line of the table shows games with an LBH/LBA quotient under 0.2. Mathematically speaking, this means the tranche of games where Stuttgart is marked down to win at odds as low as 1.33 whilst the away team’s odds to win are much higher and up to 8.5. In the whole 5 season history there were only 7 such games, 2 of which finished in draws. The average odds for draws in these 7 games were around 4.4 but with hindsight the ‘fair’ odds calculate to 3.5 (2 draws divided by 7 games = 28.6%; 1 divided by 28.6% = 3.5). This means that this group of matches has historically had negative VALUE, and indicates long-term losses for the future when laying the draw. Naturally, our aim is to avoid this and my advice is therefore to leave laying the draw well alone for now when Stuttgart are a heavy favourite on their own ground in league matches.
The next group (LBH/LBA quotient up to 0.3) offers very little VALUE (18.4%) and therefore this group can also be omitted.
However, the following group (between LBH/LBA quotients 0.3 and 1.5) is very interesting. The ‘fair’ odds after 5 seasons of statistics should be 7.86, but the odds in the market are on average offered at only 3.35. This group contains 55 fixtures, and in it there were only 7 draws (12.7%). If this trend continues then the possibility of an 87.3% hit rate exists together with mathematical VALUE of more than 100%. This looks enormously promising!
(click on table to enlarge: opens in a new tab)
This match is a good example to analyse as both teams have enjoyed a long and continuous existence in Bundesliga 1 and so there is an unbroken sequence of head-to-head meetings to look at.
Of the last 5 league meetings at Stuttgart’s ground there was only a single draw (=20%), which is within the statistical deviation.
Prophecy for 2011-2012 Season:
if Stuttgart plays at home and
the LBH/LBA quotient is between 0.3 and 1.5
In order to validate this rule and check if it also applies to our Stuttgart Vs Schalke game, or perhaps to find an alternative VALUE bet we now turn our attention to Schalke playing away:
When Schalke plays away the results do not look as “regular” as they looked for Stuttgart playing at home. At first sight no general rule or pattern can be seen, the results in all 5 seasons seem to be irregular.
However, as we are looking at laying the draw, I did the same analysis with Schalke as with Stuttgart:
The table above shows an enormously interesting result. Can you work out what it is before reading on?
When Schalke play away and the LBH/LBA quotient is under 0.4, it is better to back the draw as 4 out of 6 games in this cluster group finished drawn (home team odds: around 1.5, and Schalke away odds: over 5.0).
Schalke didn’t win any of the games in this group but did return home with a draw in 66.7% of these matches. The ‘fair’ odds for backing the draw would therefore be somewhere in the region of 1.5 but the market offers odds around 4.0 in this group. Going forwards, clearly this is a VALUE bet but for backing rather than laying the draw.
Most of Schalke’s other lay-the-draw prospects cannot really be considered VALUE bets except for a very small group with LBH/LBA quotient over 0.8 but only when the draw odds are over 3.4 at Ladbrokes. This cluster group had 14 games in 5 seasons, of which, none finished in a draw.
Fortunately, Stuttgart vs Schalke on 6.8.2011 belongs to this group because as we have seen the LBH/LBA quotient is 0.8464 and therefore there are statistically good chances that this fixture will not finish in a draw. This of course means we are looking at a genuine VALUE bet.
Please be reminded that my statistical evaluation does not guarantee that Stuttgart vs. Schalke will not finish in a draw, although the probability is as low as 12.7%. Of course, 12.7% is not zero. All I have done is identify a bet which holds a very high mathematical VALUE for the bettor and a good statistical chance of succeeding.
Please don’t gamble your entire bank on this one bet but feel free to include it in your portfolio. Making money from betting is only possible if you regard it as a long-term and very speculative financial investment. There is never a guarantee that a certain bet will ‘come in’. However, statistically speaking, there is a kind of security that if one calculates correctly, X% of all bets will be successful during the course of a season. The secret of a successful gambler is to have a strict staking plan combined with a well thought through system filled solely with VALUE bets and then to rely on repetition, putting money on them, over and over again.
As always, I wish you good luck and success!
P.S. The Ladbrokes screenshot at the beginning of this article shows odds of 8.0 for the correct full-time score of 1-0 to Stuttgart. They have won 9 times (10.6%) by this scoreline in the last 5 seasons, whilst Schalke have lost by the same scoreline 7 times (8.2%) in their away games over the same period. The ‘fair’ odds should therefore be somewhere between 9.4 and 12.1. If you fancy backing this scoreline then I would advise finding odds higher than 12.1 before you can consider it a VALUE bet.
Also, in the 5 seasons analysed, the half-time/full-time result of home/home was recorded in 31 of Stuttgart’s 85 home fixtures (36.47%). The ‘fair’ odds should therefore be 2.74, which at first glance makes Ladbrokes’ offer of 3.75 seem like a good value bet. However, Schalke’s away games saw this combination happen only 19 times in 85 matches (22.35%), which would mean ‘fair’ odds of 4.47. Calculating the average of 2.74 and 4.47 is 3.6 meaning that 3.75 holds very little value (4%).
The match on 6.8.2011 between Stuttgart and Schalke ended in a 3-0 victory for the home team (half-time: 1-0).