How to Use Soccerwidow’s Over/Under Betting Cluster Tables


Step 4 – Do the Maths!

It’s all downhill from now, honestly!

  1. Add the team’s percentages together and find the average by dividing by two:

    West Ham Home Games 73.9% + Southampton Away Games 33.3% = 107.2%

  2. 107.2% divided by 2 = 53.6% = likelihood of Over 2.5 Goals in this match
  3. Calculate the ‘true’ or ‘zero’ odds: 1 / 53.6% = 1.866
  4. The zero odds for Over 2.5 Goals in this match are 1.866
  5. Compare the zero odds with the market price: if the price on offer for Over 2.5 Goals is above our zero odds value, this is a value back bet. If the price is below zero odds, you may wish to consider laying Over 2.5 Goals at a betting exchange.

In the case of West Ham vs. Southampton, the Over 2.5 Goals bet was as high as 2.27 moments before kick-off:

Oddsportal O2.5 Highest Ante Post Odds - West Ham vs. Southampton 31/03/2018

Over 2.5 Goals – Highest Ante Post Odds – West Ham vs. Southampton 31/03/2018

This price is suggestive of a back bet with strong value in our favour as the market price far outweighs the statistical probability of the outcome.

Comparing the returns from the zero odds and the market price, the amount of ‘mathematical advantage’ contained in this bet would be 46.65%. (Expected Return on Investment).

The second method of expressing value by looking at true odds in relation to the market odds gives a figure of 21.68%. (Relative Deviation of Implied Probabilities).

Go here for the basics of calculating value, and go here to learn exactly how to calculate odds, probabilities, and value in all its forms for profitable long-term betting.

In our example, both methods of expressing value produced healthy positive figures making Over 2.5 Goals a definite back bet candidate.

The bet would have been more suitable for ‘laying’ if both measures of value had returned healthy negative results.

Match Result

The game finished 3-0 to West Ham and our Over 2.5 Goals bet therefore produced a handsome return!

Conclusion

Upon opening the cluster table to check the Over 2.5 Goals bet for value, the whole calculation and decision-making process took less than two minutes.

The speed at which it is possible to check games and build a portfolio of value bets for the weekend is one huge advantage of the Cluster Tables.

The other huge advantage is that they actually work!

IMPORTANT NOTE

Always ensure you use the correct table when recording percentages. It is all too easy to confuse the home and away panels and also the over and under panels if you are analysing several games in a row. And remember to change the team name when looking for the away figures!

Try it Yourself

Take advantage of our discounted EPL Cluster Table (containing the five-season data set 2012-17), which remains valid for betting on the rest of the 2017-18 season. It’s an excellent way of becoming familiar with the Cluster Tables for a special introductory price of just £2:

>>> epl cluster table 2012-17 <<<


IMPORTANT NOTE
Once the 2017-18 season is over, please don’t rely on this table for bets in following seasons. All tables have to be renewed at the end of each season to take into consideration a potentially different set of teams with five complete data sets, and to discard the oldest season’s figures and add the season just finished.

  • Check out our accompanying articles exploring what happened when we applied the same techniques to an entire round of 2016-17 EPL matches here and a round of 2018 U.S.A. M.L.S. games here – this demonstrates what is possible in single leagues and if every bet is a ‘value’ bet, it naturally follows that the larger the portfolio of bets is, the faster the bank should grow.
  • Buy your portfolio of supporting leagues here.


Final Words on the Timing of Calculations and/or Bet Placements

The Oddsportal image in Step 1 shows that West Ham’s price at Betsafe on 12th March at 20:53 (nineteen days before the game) was also 2.90.

Bet Placement Timing Screenshot - Oddsportal

Bet Placement Timing Screenshot – Oddsportal

The screenshot on the left (you’ve got it – just click on it to enlarge in a new tab!), shows Betsafe’s away odds throughout the ante post market and you will see that their price for Southampton at exactly the same time, 12th March – 20:53, was 2.70.

Had we performed the HO/AO quotient calculation almost three weeks before kick-off, the quotient would have been 2.90 divided by 2.70 = 1.0741 (rounded-up).

From the cluster ranges for each team mentioned earlier, you will see that this alternative quotient would have placed the match firmly inside exactly the same clusters, and it would not have mattered which bookmakers were chosen or when, or what the highest market odds for the home or away win were.

This pivotal relationship between home odds and away odds is hugely important as it allows us to choose a reliable benchmark for calculations


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Last Update: 15 September 2018

Categories:Case Studies Odds Calculation Value Betting Academy



31 Responses to “How to Use Soccerwidow’s Over/Under Betting Cluster Tables”

  1. Andy
    23 February 2019 at 6:48 pm #

    Today I backed o2.5 on st johnstone v aberdeen @ 2.4 I did calculate the zero odds to be 1.71 so it seemed like an extremely good value bet.

    I calculated ho/ao as: 3.95/2.18 = 1.8119

    However do you think I made some kind of error, I think I may have done seeing as there was such a large discrepancy in available odds and zero odds?

    • Soccerwidow
      24 February 2019 at 8:20 am #

      Hi Andy,

      you probably didn’t make a mistake as there are occasional discrepancies like that in the market. However, finding a value bet, of course, doesn’t mean that each bet wins.

  2. Andrew Shipley
    5 February 2019 at 4:23 pm #

    Approximately how many bets would you need to do before you would expect to see a positive ROI?
    I have done 20 bets and I am – 3 points, I haven’t become emotional about it yet because I am using very low stakes on purpose.
    I am only backing or laying o2.5 at odds about 1.5 to 2.5
    I just want to know whats a reasonable expectation?
    30 50 75 100 bets?

    • Soccerwidow
      9 February 2019 at 7:14 am #

      Hi Andrew,

      you should normally see a positive ROI pretty straight away; of course, only if you have chosen bets with value and you don’t start with a losing streak straight away.

      Have a look at my reports I did in real time in 2012 when I was writing match previews for Betfair Germany: Soccerwidow’s Value Betting Results: 274 Bets, from 07/12/2011 to 30/06/2012

      Of course, nobody can predict with certainty how bumpy the ride is going to be and it depends a lot of the probabilities you are playing.

      The rule of thumb is: The lower the probabilities the bumpier your ride, the more difficult on your nerves.

  3. Andy
    9 December 2018 at 11:31 am #

    Yes I have worked through it all, the only issue is that what it seems to be based on (odds inflation) appears to be contradictory to what I have been used to using in my other betting.

    I was always told that “odds inflation” does not exist by the kick off time on an exchange.

    The price it kicks off at was always viewed as infallible on the exchange because the free battle between backers and layers always settles it fairly.

    It seems to be saying that thousands of people cant get it right between them.

    • Soccerwidow
      9 December 2018 at 12:06 pm #

      Just to name a few factors that influence the prices (odds)…

      When odds are initially set, they are based on statistics plus the expected market demand as judged by the bookmakers.
      When the exchanges open the markets, traders come in (including bots).
      One hour before kick-off, the public emotions become very strong when the team news is being published.

      • Andy
        9 December 2018 at 2:53 pm #

        So you think its best to wait until team news is published before we enter the bets?

        • Soccerwidow
          10 December 2018 at 6:27 am #

          Hi Andy,

          Your question was about ‘odds inflation’ and I answered with a few examples that affect odds (= prices of bets) (i.e. rising or falling). The fluctuations go in both directions simultaneously. When one side goes up, the other goes down. Further detail on this topic is contained within the pages of the Odds Calculation coursebook.

  4. Andy
    9 December 2018 at 1:08 am #

    I am still unsure how I can make money long term from this unless I beat the closing line of the exchange or a sharp bookmaker like Pinnacle. I have always been told that beating the closing line of an exchange is the only way to take value since the market knows everything its possible to know about an event and thus it is reflected in the price.

    • Soccerwidow
      9 December 2018 at 6:48 am #

      Hi Andy, how to make profits when using the Cluster Tables is described in minute detail in the Over/Under course book: https://www.soccerwidow.com/products/over-under-goals-fundamentals-sports-betting/

      The market ‘knows’ everything possible but the different markets are connected and especially public expectations put a lot of price pressure on the odds. So, for example, if Bayern Munich plays away from home a weaker team at their home grounds, everybody is expecting to see lots of goals in that match; however, analysing the upcoming match statistically, the weaker team may be actually pretty strong in defending their own goal, even against teams like Bayern. In this example, the Over odds would be all inflated and you can recognise that using the Cluster Tables.

      Have you worked through your course book from the beginning to the end, page by page?

  5. Andy
    5 December 2018 at 9:10 pm #

    Hi,

    I have noticed that sometimes the ho/ao result will be in a certain cluster – however when I look at the odds they will be in another cluster, the “average” odds section I am talking about.

    So what should I do when they do not both align?

    • Soccerwidow
      8 December 2018 at 9:50 am #

      Hi Andy, I assume that you’re referring to the ‘home odds (average)’ display on the ‘Betting Tables’ tab?

      They are for information purposes only, to help people to get a feeling what the HO/AO clusters mean, especially when looking through upcoming matches, in order to identify quickly matches that may be in the correct cluster. Nothing else.

      No, they do not have to align. It’s only the HO/AO quotient that matters.

  6. Andy
    25 November 2018 at 7:40 pm #

    “However, if you bet on portfolios then it is sometimes a good idea to include all bets above ‘zero’ odds, even if they are ‘only’ within the ‘fair’ odds range to spread the risk as much as possible.”

    Is what you are saying here one approach is just to take all the bets that are above zero odds and disregard standard deviation in order to smooth out the variance?

    • Soccerwidow
      26 November 2018 at 12:58 pm #

      Hi Andy, you’ve just bought the course book a few days ago. Please be patient and first work through the whole course book; page by page; chapter by chapter. It is a lot to comprehend but once you succeed to understand you will be able to answer your question yourself. To truly master betting a huge learning curve is required. It takes time and a lot of hard work. You are just at the beginning.

      Good luck!

  7. Andy
    25 November 2018 at 2:34 pm #

    So on my first attempt to calculate anything, I found that the upcoming 1/12 match Werder vs Bayern the fair odds of o2.5 is exactly 2.0, and the betfair odds is 1.48 which is way out in the wrong way for a value bet.

    Anyone can comment if I got it right? TY

    • Soccerwidow
      26 November 2018 at 1:06 pm #

      Andy, please work through the course book! You will find the answer to that there.

      It’s an away game for Bayern and they are far less strong when playing away than when playing on home grounds. Therefore, the odds you calculated for O2.5 are probably right. Bayern Munich away games are always excellent examples where the bookmakers take huge advantage of the lack of knowledge to calculate probabilities by the majority of punters.

  8. Andrew
    25 November 2018 at 12:19 pm #

    Anyone been able to get these tables to work on a mac?

    I tried numbers, google sheets but they both don’t work properly.

    Only other thing is if I get excel for mac.

    • Soccerwidow
      26 November 2018 at 1:03 pm #

      Hi Andrew, I’m sorry if you don’t get the tables to work on mac. Do you have anywhere where you have access to a PC?

      Alternatively, just print out the course book. The layout allows for double-sided printing and binding. To work through the course book you don’t necessarily require the Excel tables.

  9. AM0751
    3 May 2018 at 9:42 am #

    Oh, another question popped up, this one seems more legit…

    I have noticed that the %CV values for over and under x goals are the same in Japan, Ireland, and Iceland for example.

    Yet in South-Korea and Sweden for example, they are different.

    am having trouble explaining that to myself. Can you shed some light on this?
    ;
    Thank you 🙂

    • Soccerwidow
      3 May 2018 at 9:53 am #

      Hi AM0751,

      the CV% should normally be the same for Over and Under as you see it in Japan, Ireland and Iceland for example.

      South Korea changed the format in 2014: from former 266 matches per annum it reduced to 228. Same applies to Sweden; it’s not as massive as in South Korea but there were two void matches in the five years of data.

      Therefore the uncertainty (deviation) in South Korea is much bigger than in Sweden; and these two have a higher uncertainty that the ‘regular’ leagues like Japan, Ireland and Iceland.

      I hope that makes sense.

      • AM0751
        3 May 2018 at 7:43 pm #

        Thank you very much for your answer. I have one more question.

        On another page, right winger says that generally speaking, odds that have smaller yield (Value 2) than %CV values are candidates for lay bets.

        Can you maybe expand on that a bit more? Let me give you an example.

        For arguments sake, say we have a 75% chance on either over or under (zero odds).
        Makes 1.33
        The %CV is 2%
        So fair odds are 1.3 to 1.37

        Do the lay candidates need to be below 1.3 to qualify?
        Or is a Value2 smaller than %CV already enough to have it qualify as a lay bet?

        I hope I make sense! Looking forward to your answer.

        • Soccerwidow
          4 May 2018 at 9:21 am #

          It really all depends on the strategy you’re following and it’s all about risk diversification. The problem with ‘zero odds’ is that it is very unlikely that the observed results of the forthcoming season will be exactly matching the ‘zero’ probability (the mean probability of the last 5 seasons). Even with using the standard deviation to calculate the expected (= most probable) range there is only a 95% confidence level that the results observed in reality will be within the expected range.

          Therefore, if ‘Lay’ or ‘Back’ within the range really depends on the strategy you’re following. It’s like throwing a dice… you’ve got there a 50/50 chance to have head or tails. That the distribution will be even 50/50 you will only observe, say, after you’ve thrown the dice ten thousands times. But if you only throw them 100 times (like you do in betting) then the observed distribution is likely to be uneven. It can be something like 55/45 or 45/55. Therefore, it really depends on your strategy if you decide to ‘lay’ heads or if you ‘back’ them during the 100 throws.

          Generally speaking, everything below the ‘zero’ odds is likely to be a lay candidate, everything above a back candidate. But I say ‘likely’ not ‘is’.

  10. AM0751
    2 May 2018 at 9:30 am #

    Please disregard my last comment. I have been looking for an answer all over, and at the moment I decide to ask you about it, I see the comment below me addressed the exact same issue. Sorry about that, and have a nice day.

    • Soccerwidow
      2 May 2018 at 9:36 am #

      You too, have a nice day! I still replied to your comment as it was straight to the point and it will hopefully save other people’s time to search for an answer.

  11. AM0751
    2 May 2018 at 9:25 am #

    Hello soccerwidow,

    A quick question.
    You mention zero odds here, but there is no mention here of deviation at all, while it is prominently mentioned in the course. Should that not be the “extra” final step?

    • Soccerwidow
      2 May 2018 at 9:35 am #

      Hi AM0751,

      this article is an abridged version (or call it, a subsequent example) from the course book. Problem is that the deviation part in the course book contains numerous pages; at least 16, to explain the whole concept in minute detail… No chance to be able to summarize that in a short article.

      We will certainly at some stage publish mor articles on that subject but good things take their time. 😉

  12. Simon
    5 April 2018 at 11:49 pm #

    Hi RW,

    I read and studied the betting over/under course book back in 2016/17 and for a while regularly used the cluster tables for finding over/under bets before focusing on the HDAFU tables.

    In the course book I recall that standard deviation was a consideration and that when using the tables to find the percentage/odds for say over 2.5 goals, you would obtain the number for the home and away side, add them together, divide by 2, then apply the relevant standard deviation to that number. I recall the explanation in the course being that having markets odds over and above the zero odds is not in and of itself a marker of value; instead the market odds should be above the zero odds after applying the correct standard deviation.

    I couldn’t see any mention of this in the article, so was wondering is this step no longer necessary in the method to find betting opportunities? I remember you guys saying the course was being updated, so am not sure if the method has been revised. It’s been a while since I used these tables and haven’t purchased an updated course, so I may be out of the loop a little!

    Thanks.

    Simon.

    • Soccerwidow
      6 April 2018 at 5:17 am #

      Hi Simon,

      there is still the distinction between ‘zero’ odds and ‘fair’ odds ranges necessary, as explained in the course. And it still applies that odds within the ‘fair’ odds range (‘zero’ probability ± deviation) don’t really contain long-term value.

      However, if you bet on portfolios then it is sometimes a good idea to include all bets above ‘zero’ odds, even if they are ‘only’ within the ‘fair’ odds range to spread the risk as much as possible.

      The problem with writing articles for the website is that they have to be kept short & sweet as well easily understandable. The course explains value betting in much greater length and covers loads of different topics necessarily to understand odds calculation in order to find an edge in the bookmaker market. That is unfortunately not possible when writing a 1,000 words article for Soccerwidow.

      However, what we should probably do is to add a box at the end of these articles with a disclaimer that the information provided in the article is an abridged version and/or a subsequent example from the course book. Thanks for pointing that out! We will keep that in mind. 🙂

      By the way, how did you get on with the cluster tables before switching to the HDA tables?

      • Simon
        22 April 2018 at 6:18 pm #

        Hi Soccerwidow,

        Well, what I did was to backtest 2 seasons worth of results for 6 top European Leagues:
        I decided to just focus on over/under 2.5 goals, no matter what the probability of that outcome would be. So I have an overall set of results for the seasons I tested, and also results when just focusing on bets with probability of success of more than 50%.

        2015/16:

        Overall results:
        349 bets: 170 wins, 179 losses, 48.71% hit rate, £1100 profit

        Over 50% chance:
        272 bets: 148 wins, 124 losses, 54.41% hit rate , £2526 profit

        2016/17:

        Overall results:
        359 bets: 182 wins, 177 losses, 50.70% hit rate, £4700 profit

        Over 50% chance:
        291 bets: 149 wins, 142 losses, 51.20% hit rate, £1513

        It was strange to see those results because in the 15/16 season the bets with over 50% chance did better than betting on everything. The reverse was true when looking at 16/17 season.

        I delved into individual game date to see why that may have been the case, and in the 16/17 season, there were many games that hit with big odds, especially for the under 2.5. There was one game at Barcelona which they won 1-0 and the odds for under 2.5 are around 7!

        So it all really depends on what bets you want to take into your portfolio which will shape your final results. I can imagine it would be nerve wracking to watch Barcelona at home playing a minnow and praying for under 2.5 goals!

        • Soccerwidow
          2 May 2018 at 6:49 am #

          Hi Simon, it’s nice to hear that your back testing was so successful. 🙂

          Can you perhaps try to avoid watching games that you have placed bets on (e.g. your example with Barcelona)?

          I personally find it much more rewarding to carry out the calculations by Friday evening, place the bets, have a nice weekend off, and then check the results on Sunday evening.

          This is the main reason why, over the whole website, I specialise in Ante-Post betting and do not indulge trading. This is to stop (or at least, control) these nerve wracking experiences.

          But then again I don’t remember the last time I watched a match. 😉

          • Right Winger
            2 May 2018 at 9:25 am #

            Simon, I can confirm that I have never known Soccerwidow to sit through an entire match in all the time I have known her.

            She truly is interested solely in the mathematics of predicting outcomes (and the bragging rights when she gets it right!).

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