Understanding the value of a bet
Step by step towards successful betting
Our previous section provided an introduction to our series, titled “Step by step towards successful betting”. We named the individual topics that will be the focus of subsequent sections of our guide. And today, the second section of our guide will focus on our first serious topic. Do you know what valuable bets are? Have you heard the term “valuebetting”? Let’s explain what these mean.
Understanding the concept of values, value betting
It is critical to fully understand and grasp what the value of a bet is. This is, in fact, a requirement for ensuring that your steps towards successful betting go in the right direction. You’ve surely heard claims such as: “This can’t go wrong. This team can’t lose.” Statements like these are frequent heard in matches that feature a strong favorite, and in general this applies to odds that are at most 1.3 (representing a probability of at least 77%; more information is available in the Mathematical foundations of betting section). Naturally, these borderline and bold claims do not represent anything unacceptable; however, they either directly or indirectly damage the better’s morale. Primarily, they lead us away from the real state of affairs – in particular from finding the value of bets.
Let us now ask a fundamental question: is the probability of the given favorite winning higher than the odds (which can also be represented as a probability) offered by the bookmaker? As long as we always keep this fundamental question in mind, we’ll be heading in the right direction.
But anyway, let us return to the aforementioned unhealthy claim about a clear outcome of a match. Absolute statements about wins or losses of a specific team can be viewed as something we really, really want, and in the end we assign it a lot of value because we want it. But in this sense, the term "value" only represents a common expression which does not capture the value itself. True value is hidden in bets with odds that are higher than the real probability of the given outcome due to various changes over time. Finding them requires a good insight into the given team and match, timely reactions, the ability to find the best available odds and have the right risk management along with the associated statistics.
In spite of all we mentioned up to now, the vast majority of betters has not or does not even want to truly master the concept of value. This represents an opportunity for the minority of players, who can use this to their advantage.
In the next section, we will discuss how bookmakers create their odds. And, step by step, we will see how to obtain better results when betting.