Why The Bookies Win : Most Odds Are Stacked In Their Favour

Written By: Mike Lovatt
Last Updated: February 14, 2023

There used to be a time in the past when the bookies would often get some of their odds way wrong. This guide to betting focuses on finding odds that represent higher value than expected.

Today, with advanced mathematical algorithms and computers doing big data analysis for the bookies, the chances of them getting things wrong are less than they used to be and with some markets it is actually quite apparent that the odds are completely stacked.

For instance, some punters will choose to bet on which football team will get the first ball in the match, which is decided by a flip of a coin. While the outcome is decided by a toss of a coin and both sides have a 50% chance of winning the toss, odds on this bet will commonly be 4/5, meaning you will be losing money each time you place such a bet no matter what, since the most you can win is 4 units, the most you can lose is 5 and you will win exactly 50% of the time.

In other markets, the odds are less clear and it may seem to an unknowledgeable player that the odds are completely fair or even advantageous for them. The truth is that in most cases, especially with the big sporting events, the bookies do a hell of a job setting the odds in their favour.

This is why the vast majority of profitable sports bettors don’t make their money betting on whether Manchester United will beat Chelsea, but rather betting lesser European football leagues, other sports or horse races.

How To Beat The Bookies At Their Own Game

Profitable sports betting means finding an edge or flawed odds, and betting those events and outcomes where you believe you have a statistical advantage. While we did say that the bookies have some pretty sophisticated software that generates the odds, true sports experts can definitely still have an edge.

For instance, if you are a Swede, living in Sweden and going to football matches on a regular basis, it is certain that you may pick up on some things that may help you have an edge over the bookie. The problem is it is very difficult to actually go to so many sporting events in person, but the very best bettors do their best to visit as many games as possible.

Whether you go to matches on a regular basis, or do your best to stay very well informed, in order to be a profitable sports bettor, you will want to specialise pretty big time. Specialising means not only picking a single sport to bet but can go even further, with many players only betting one or two competitions and some being true experts in particular teams and their performances.

The best way to turn the tables and know when the odds can be taken advantage of is to specialise as much as possible and get extremely well informed in one type of sports betting. Most people nowadays choose the Asian Handicap and Over/Under 2.5 Goal in football or other markets in other sports and specialise in those markets, seldom betting on anything else.

When it comes to specialisation, the real trick is likely in finding the sweet spot, or rather the combination of things that work perfectly for you in particular. There is really no fixed pattern of betting that will work for each and every bettor and we advise researching the various markets and sports and finding out for yourself what works best for you.

Playing Multiple Bookies

Most recreational sports bettors tend to simply open an account with one of the bookmakers or use a single live bookie to place all their bets. If you are betting to have fun, this is quit natural, but professional bettors don’t bet to have fun, rather to make a profit.

With this in mind, the professional bettor will always have an account with multiple online bookmakers and funds ready for the deposit to any of those bookies as needed. The reason to do this is because the bookies will never offer the same odds and once you find a profitable bet, you may actually find that another bookie is offering it at even better odds. Naturally, you will always want to bet with the best odds possible.

While it is true that bookmakers such as Bet365 and Pinnacle Sports usually offer the best odds across the markets, there will be quite a few instances where one of the other bookies will offer better odds. This is why you should always be ready and have a confirmed account at each of the major bookies and perhaps even some minor local bookies that may get the odds wrong even more often.

Conclusion : Stack ‘em In Your Favor

The bookies naturally do their best to stack the odds in their favor and make sure they win no matter what. As a professional sports bettor, it will be your job to continually look for new ways of beating the bookies and take advantage of the slight edges that come from faulty odds, differences in odds among the various bookies and any other advantageous situations.

Having an account ready for betting with multiple bookies is one of the keys to long term success and given the modern market also provides you with an opportunity to bet in the sports betting exchange markets such as Betfair Exchange, it is certainly important that you also learn to use this platform.

Overall speaking, you will want to always look at the odds and spreads from the bookie’s perspective, understand how it is they plan to beat the bettors and make your own plan that counteracts this, using all the strategies at your disposal.

Mike Lovatt

Mike has over 14 years of experience with online sports betting, having used countless online betting sites. Mike previously provided football betting tips on goals and corners in Facebook groups before starting his own betting website. A huge football fan, Mike has been writing betting guides and football betting advice for years.

View all posts by

Leave a comment