Value Bet Test Evaluation – Three Months – 65% Bank Increase


Screenshot showing the complete breakdown of the three month value betting expirement

Summary of all transacted bets during the three month test period

The table on the left shows a summary of all the bets transacted during the three month test period.

This experiment was enormously successful, with an 80.2% hit-rate on all bet predictions, a controlled increase of 65.4% of the initial starting bank in only three months, and an average ‘value’ per winning bet of 34.3% (i.e. the mathematical ‘edge’ or ‘advantage’).

Read our What is a bet? article for information on calculating mathematical advantage.

You will of course ask why in future we do not simply deposit, say £25,000, into the account if the system is so ‘safe’?

This is a fair point, and is explained by the rather difficult proposition of finding selections in Betfair where larger stakes can be matched (for example, markets in Belgian, Turkish or Greek games).

This challenge appeared with stakes as small as £13 (the zip-files show a number of split stake bets on the same game and sometimes it was even impossible to get a stake match according to our 4% of total bank principle).

In order to facilitate more bets in the portfolio we must now attend to leagues where there is more liquidity, or analyse additional bet types.

Also, because of the low liquidity in some markets, it became necessary to build portfolios containing more than 25 bets per round in order to maintain the percentage growth of the account. This in turn created pressure for greater numbers of statistically based ‘value’ bets, increasing the analysis time.

The simple fact is that an inability to analyse fast enough is the biggest obstacle to finding a sufficient number of ‘value’ bets per round in order to ensure optimised diversification of the portfolio (i.e. spreading the risk as much as possible).

We admit that this situation came along faster than expected but, the experiment seems to conclude that football betting in general is just a numbers game.

In order to become successful, either bet seldom and big or, play a game of attrition with large numbers of bets involving relatively small stakes. Of course, the former is very risky and the latter is hugely time-consuming.

To bypass some of the crippling commission charges, an alternative to the overarching betting exchange approach is to place all the ‘back’ bets with bookmakers but here, there is a fear of account closures by bookmakers who continually lose money at the hands of the successful punter. It also adds time to the whole operation.

Therefore, the diversification process continues with ongoing analysis of different leagues in order to find areas of potential value in which to bet upon regularly, and perhaps with increasing levels of stakes.

Further Challenges Encountered:

  • Betfair Premium Charges have become more of an issue, already claiming 34% of the profit: instead of £257.04 winnings, the premium charge has reduced this to £163.56
  • There are sometimes periods of a week or two when there are no league games being played due to international breaks, cup competitions, etc., and of course there are winter breaks of up to three months in various European countries with colder climates.
  • The majority of games take place at weekends with fewer games during the week, meaning a limit of around 34 (possibly 40) betting rounds on European leagues per season. We will have to consider gathering and analysing statistics from elsewhere in the world if the desire to bet throughout the year is to be achieved.

Further Reading

If you enjoyed this article, our article about Sharp Betting approach may also be of interest.

For more advanced techniques, try also our Combinatorics and Probability Theory article, which is certain to add to your accumulated knowledge of football betting and gambling in general.

Last Update: 10 November 2011

Categories:Case Studies Match Previews Money Management Value Betting Academy

4 Responses to “Value Bet Test Evaluation – Three Months – 65% Bank Increase”

  1. 23 September 2016 at 1:36 pm #

    Hello Soccerwidow!

    Did you continue the campaign?
    What are the leagues where the value Detector can be useful of identifying value bets?


    • 26 September 2016 at 4:53 pm #

      Hello again Sarkec,

      No, sadly we had to finish the campaign due to time constraints but, carrying it on would not have told us anything we didn’t already know.

      The simulation proved that if you have positive value on your side, then long-term profits are just a numbers game.

      Regarding the Value Detector, personally I would look at leagues with high liquidity, and also take into account what their league composition stability ratio is. For example, the German Bundesliga 1 has a high stability ratio of 66.67%. This means that 66.67% of the teams currently playing in this league (2016-17) have been ever-present for a total of five seasons up to this point. The Czech 1. Liga has a 75% stability ratio, but playing this league only makes sense in the bookmaker market, as liquidity in exchanges for this league is low.

      Look also for things around 45-50% probability and higher.

  2. 21 November 2011 at 4:16 pm #

    Hi panos, I’ll try to answer to your questions 🙂

    • I only bet on leagues I have statistics for at least 5 years. For this I use where you find statistics for 11 European leagues for download.
    • I include as many as possible games into my analyses (teams which have played in the past five years with comparable strength) and not only the last 6 matches.
    • Specializing is very important as one single bettor cannot be master of too many different leagues and strategies. My advice is to concentrate on very few leagues but to become a master in these.
    • It is quite hard to find value bets in the very popular markets such as Premier League, but second and third divisions or smaller markets such as Turkish games or Greece which are not as efficient as the popular markets often have quite a number of value bets.
    • Team performance obviously changes and sometimes a team may become a completely different team in the new season, e.g. Man City this season, what means that the market prices which are normally based on statistics for the last 3 to 5 years don’t reflect the new performance and offer value.
    • I do not bet on ‘cup’ competitions such as the Champions League as there is no possibility of obtaining reliable statistics due to the fact that that the teams competing here are mostly different each year.

    Generally speaking, one can only make money from betting if consistently betting on value, either ‘laying’ if the prices are under the zero odds or ‘backing’ if the price is over the zero odds and therefore in favour of the gambler.

    Becoming a successful gambler may be probably just as hard as becoming a successful surgeon. Nobody can simply go into a hospital and start operating without many years of training and practice. Unfortunately, the same applies to gambling. Only with profound understanding of the betting markets, odds calculation, league performance, probabilities and statistics, which obviously include betting ‘values’, etc., one can make money with betting.

  3. 20 November 2011 at 9:23 pm #

    hi again soccerwidow ! when do you make a bet on 1×2, what parameters take into consideration, and what parameters not.

    Home matches , Draw matches , Lose matches put into equation ? (by percentages , e.g. 5 home win of 6 matches =83.3% /100 0.83 etc)
    Recent form put into equation? how many matches in recent form 4 , 6 ?
    Injuries, suspended players put into equation ??

    and do you make bets only on regular leagues , Eg. premier league , Serie A , Bundesliga etc or do you also bet on champions league , UEFA etc??
    at least sometimes you find “stables”
    parameters to bet in the long run in regular leagues , but no idea how to make a profit in Champions league matches , most of the matches no any parameter defined (no h2h , no many previous matches etc)

    I know you put the example of stuttgart vs schalke , many years in bundesliga1 etc but how to do it in a Champions league?
    i think bookmakers have a quotient for big teams , (Barcelona , Mancheser UTD etc ) and for newbie/poor teams (E.g , they
    put into the same quotient Cluj in 2010 in Champions league , Galati in 2011 in Champions League and so on.
    I see the seconds division on many countries , in 2 years , many teams changes , but they put a quotient for each team
    based on previous team , e.g. championship 2008/2009 volwes and 2010/2011 qpr , similar trends ,both promoted so bookmakers put the same quotitent for qpr based on wolves trends , and so happen with many teams (because many teams changes etc) and they based on the behavior of previous teams , i hope you understand what i meant , i speak very bad english and i hope you answer my questions.


    pd: you at least have say something about betting ,you guide us a little bit how to betting
    but i see some blogs who say you must bet on value bet and nothing more, no examples etc, you at least have
    give us some successful examples.

    pd2: i have plenty questions about betting but i dont want “crack your head” with questions , i’m learn excel because i want predict games by myself, nowadays i bet following very good tipser to get a small profit but in a future i want to predict games by myself as i mentioned above.

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