5 Simple Steps to Win Over and Under Betting

(4) Compare your Calculated Fair Odds with the Market Odds & Identify the Value Bets

Please note that we are only showing one possible way to choose value picks in this article:

Picking bets for your portfolio by odds differences only. The expected Yield or expected Profitability are not taken into consideration, nor are any deviations or odds ranges. These additional selection criteria are explained in great length and detail in the Fundamentals of Sports Betting course. Unfortunately it is not possible to summarise 169 pages in a short article. Sorry!

The calculations for the Tottenham vs Manchester United match are now finished. However, to bet successfully you really have to be playing a whole portfolio of bets, just like the bookmakers do.

Would have been only betting on the single Over 2.5 bet for Tottenham vs Manchester United, then although the probability was 55.4%, there still was a likelihood of 44.6% that the bet with ‘only’ 55.4% probability to win may lose.

By the way, the Tottenham vs. Manchester Utd. match finished 2-1 and the Over 2.5 goal value bet won, but unfortunately, this is not always the case as you will see further down in the article.

Here are all the matches from the weekend for which the Cluster Tables were applicable (Teams playing each other with an history of 5 seasons each in the EPL; we don’t calculate other teams as it’s far too difficult!)

WE EPL 12.5.2017 to 16.5.2017 - True Odds vs Market Odds

After you have found the ‘fair’ odds, you can compare them with the market odds.

You can see that whenever the market prices were below the ‘true’ odds it is marked in PINK in the screenshot as well as in the video. These PINK bets all were lay candidates (market odds lower than the ‘true’ odds) whilst the other bets were back candidates (market odds higher than the ‘true’ odds).

We will see in the next chapter whether these picks actually worked…

(5) Decide Whether To Lay or To Back

This step really depends on your personal circumstances and preferences.

If you have easy access to all bookmakers and you can ensure that you source the highest possible odds in the market then a back strategy is certainly of interest to you.

WE EPL 12.5.2017 to 16.5.2017 - Results Lay Back Highest OddsThe staking plan for the calculation is to win every time ‘flat’ 100 units.
When laying with exchanges there is a 5% commission fee which has been applied.

Of course, you may have an exchange account and actually prefer laying as an option. However, as you can see above, laying in this example isn’t exactly the best option if you can source similar high odds with the bookmakers as there isn’t any commission charge.

Exchanges always have the highest odds but Betfair, for example, charges 5% of your winnings which would have left you with 75.00 units profits when laying compared to 84.02 units when backing with the bookies.

Should you be one of the many reading this article without access to exchanges because they may be banned in your country but dream about developing a ‘laying’ strategy, don’t worry! There is no need to have access to any betting exchanges to be able to ‘lay’ Over/Unders. This is another beauty of Over / Under betting!

You simply place your ‘lay’ bet as a ‘back’ bet on the opposite result – so, if you have chosen to ‘lay’ Over, then you simply ‘back’ the Under bet, and vice versa.

Here’s a screenshot that if you can at least get average bookmaker odds that you won’t miss out much profit compared to exchanges (in this example you would have made a profit of 58.14 units compared to 75.00 units on Betfair)

WE EPL 12.5.2017 to 16.5.2017 - Results Back Average Odds

By the way, this was quite an unusual weekend: The majority of the matches were vastly under-priced for the Over 2.5 goals by the bookmakers. For example, instead of pricing close to 2.24 for the Stoke vs. Arsenal game the bookies only offered 1.65. This was applicable to almost every match that weekend. Normally the discrepancy of odds is not that obvious.

The explanation for this is that most punters apply their gut feelings to betting and the bookies truly took advantage of it that weekend.

I was advised by a true EPL supporter whilst writing this article that the management doesn’t pay too much attention to the last few games in a season. For the last matches they often send their reserve teams on the pitch and therefore, when the EPL season comes to its close one sees many more matches with Over 2.5 than with Under 2.5 Goals.

If you look at the 15 matches in this round, this observation is spot on; only four games finished with Under 2.5 goals (26.7%) in this round of matches. Nevertheless, our picks did well! Very well! We ensured that we too have the mathematical advantage on our side! 😊

What Else Should You Know

I hope that the article showed you that you really don’t need to read the team news and consider the last few matches when making your picks for the weekend. Using the Cluster Tables doesn’t require any input from current matches to generate profits.

It truly is easy to identify value bets for any weekend, not just the second to last weekend in the season like shown in this article. Reserve teams or not, end of the season or not, I showed you that bookmakers follow the public opinion when determining their odds, and the teams, despite being ‘reserve teams’ actually played ‘statistically correct’ and the smart bettor made a fortune!

Please be aware that I have not mentioned any form of risk management in this article.

Further, I have shown you only one way to pick bets for your portfolio. There are many more options, such as:

  • Choosing bets that show the highest yield and a winning probability of at least 75%
  • Choosing bets with the highest yield/probability ratio
  • Choosing bets within a certain probability cluster
  • … and so on

I can only reiterate that you should really consider purchasing the Over Under Betting Course and working through it before starting to use the cluster tables. Otherwise, they will never unfold their full potential for you.

Try the EPL Cluster Table for Only £2

After reading this article, you may now wish to play around with the Cluster Table that I used for the screenshots in this article. You can purchase the EPL Cluster Table here for £2:

>>> epl cluster table 2011-16 <<<

With the purchase of this EPL cluster table, you will receive a discount code, worth £5 applicable for the O/U Betting Course.

You can use this table for backtesting for the 2016-17 EPL season. Randomly select any weekend and carry out the calculations as demonstrated in this article. Try experimenting a little with compiling different portfolios such as

  • Choosing only Under 3.5 Goal bets
  • Choosing bets which have at least a 60% probability to win
  • Choosing bets with a strong home favourite only
  • … and so on… use your imagination to find a system which actually works for you!

Once you understand how the Cluster Tables work and have found the system you want to focus on, picking bets for a weekend will be truly easy, like eating a piece of cake.

Please note that this is an ‘expired’ table and you cannot use it for the forthcoming/current season but it will certainly give you a good idea of the table’s full functionality.

If you have any questions on how to use the cluster tables, please use the comment section below.

Feel free to ask whatever you want, and Good Luck with your betting!

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Last Update: 10 July 2017

Categories:Case Studies Odds Calculation Value Betting Academy

18 Responses to “5 Simple Steps to Win Over and Under Betting”

  1. 5 September 2019 at 1:59 pm #

    Hi. I’ve read the article and i tried to check this strategy if it’s worths trying but no success. In what moment shall i select the highest odds and why these? Can you help me with some info? How are the clusters calculated? How the average odds (home and away) we’re included in quotients between 100.0000 and 38.741. I wait for your answer. Thank you.

  2. 20 November 2018 at 7:38 pm #

    As a novice this statement seem ludicrous:

    “Bookmakers seldom price their odds to represent the true probabilities. They set odds that follow the public opinion.”

    I always thought the exchange odds at least are the real odds.

    • 20 November 2018 at 9:19 pm #

      Hi Andrew,

      Odds move throughout the ante-post period right up until kick-off based on the weight of money placed by punters. Exchange odds follow the bookmaker lead – they have to, otherwise, there would be arbitrage opportunities everywhere. Accounting for the commission element of exchange odds, they are usually around the same as the leading bookmakers at whatever time you check them.

      Rarely do odds represent the true statistical likelihood (based on past statistics) of any particular outcome. A bookmaker may open his book (sometimes months ahead of the event) at the absolute true odds figure, but they cannot possibly stay at the same level – they must either increase if public demand is stronger for the reverse outcomes or decrease if punters are heavily backing, for example, a hot favourite.

      I hope this helps in some small way.

  3. 22 December 2017 at 9:26 am #

    how to calculate stake for back bet for the winning capped to 100 at odds lower than 2.00 .

    • 22 December 2017 at 11:26 am #

      Hi Zinphyo,

      Divide your stake by the odds-minus-one.

      For example, odds are 1.98. Your desired win is 100.

      100 divided by 0.98 = 102.04, which is the stake needed to win 100 units at odds of 1.98.

      I hope this helps!

  4. 21 December 2017 at 10:08 pm #

    I am sorry for posting these questions under this topic since its about the cluster tables. But here you teach about laying. Ok, I’m using the value calculator. My first question is that how do I identify the lay candidates. Since under over bets are value bets if the yield is bigger than relative standard deviation. But are the bets with smaller yield than relative standard deviation good for laying? Also I’d like to know if it’s good idea to play all the bets that are for value for one match. I mean if I have 3 value bets for let’s say under 2.5 3.5 and 4.5. Is it good practice to play those all or just pick the best bet for my taste? Currently I pick one bet for a match. But is it better this way or the other I mentioned?.

    • 22 December 2017 at 11:39 am #

      Hi Jari,

      Generally speaking, yes, bets with a yield smaller than RSD are worthwhile looking at from a lay perspective.

      But to guide you further and also answer your question about whether to play a range of over/under bets in the same match, I’m afraid you will have to paper test to see what works and what doesn’t.

      Each league is different, so what works in one league may not necessarily work in the next.

      From a personal perspective, I would only take one bet of the same bet type per match as I am risk averse and would not gamble on losing three times on the same result. But everyone is different and has their own personal taste. It’s your decision, sorry!

      Thanks for the comment.

  5. 7 November 2017 at 3:06 pm #

    Hi Soccerwiddow,

    I really appreciate your work and I do always have a good read here. But, considering the method above and trying this by myself it somehow becomes really dependent on the choosen clusters, of course. More precise, I can cluster teams easily to achieve a good ROI in the past but applying those clusters on future games seems not worth doing so. What is your way of clustering? I played around with that a while, but was never able to achieve a positive return over a longer time intervall. Maybe you can give a hint 🙂

    Best, Thomas

    • 8 November 2017 at 7:42 am #

      Hi Thomas,

      it’s all about distributions… assuming that you calculated correctly, you will probably achieve a hit rate as expected (in the long run) and you have also probably ensured that you have the mathematical advantage on your side (a positive Yield/Profitability expectation) but unfortunately, the really observed results (almost) never line up like little soldiers in a straight line.

      Here are three random scenarios of the same betting strategy: 55% probability (what are usually the Over 2,5 goal bets in the BL1) with an expected Yield of 15% (right click the images to enlarge them in a new window):


      55% prob + 15% yield simulation PL - v3

      Above scenario is the gamblers dream… the profit/losses line up in a nice regular manner. Unfortunately, this happens much more rarely that you would think.


      55% prob + 15% yield simulation PL - v1

      In above second scenario the gambler needs approx. 120 bets until finally his P/L starts picking up.


      55% prob + 15% yield simulation PL - v2

      The image above is a “worst case” scenario – 240 bets, and nothing happens!


      Please note that image #1 and image #3 (best case and worst case scenarios) achieve at the end similar profits.

      There are thousands and thousands scenarios how a random distribution may line up. I’m really sorry but there is absolutely nothing you can do about it except of being very patient. What helps is to increase the probability to win, or even consider arbitrage betting.

  6. 15 August 2017 at 11:25 am #

    Hi there, interesting stuff – just tried it myself on some of the data I had for the premier league; looks promising. One question though, why are the odds ranges different for the away side than at home?
    Intrestingly, around the point you made on the timing of analysing the data; when I looked @ Arsenal v Liverpool (both home and away), the ranges seemed pretty consistent for the last few years, so the point at which you review the odds available, seems to make little difference as you suggest.

  7. 12 August 2017 at 4:25 pm #

    Hi, bought the o/u course and have the bundesliga tables for 2012-17 but the password for the GD by Team sheet on the legal tab doesn’t seem to work.

    Could you let me know what the real password is?


    • 13 August 2017 at 6:49 am #

      Hi Jamie, I’ve just sent out an update email. Please check your emails and download the spreadsheet again. The password was wrong. Sorry for your troubles!

  8. 8 August 2017 at 9:46 pm #

    Is there any way how to calculate over/under odds for 2 goals if I know lines for over/under 1.5 goals and lines for over/under 2.5 goals?
    Total Odds
    Over 1.5 1.25
    Over 2.5 1.8
    Under 1.5 4.6
    Under 2.5 2.2
    Over 2 ???
    Under 2 ???

  9. 17 July 2017 at 11:20 am #

    Out of interest, is the odds clusters approach preferred to using the value bet calculator? Is one approach considered more accurate than the other by yourselves?


    • 17 July 2017 at 8:53 pm #

      Hi Scott,

      The OU Odds Clusters are more a tool for systematic betting as they allow you to analyse many games in a very short period of time to produce a diversified portfolio of bets.

      The VC calculates ‘Value’ for many bet types, not only Over/Under bets, but requires more time to be filled in. Furthermore, the VC shows ‘value I’ and ‘value II’ – these are indicators for the profitability of a bet and the expected Yield.

      Sorry, but I cannot go in any deeper explanation. The topic is too complex and required a whole course. There are both approaches explained in great detail.

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