Unlike games of chance, when one is betting on soccer (or any other sport) doing some research certainly pays off. This is because the results are not entirely random, but are heavily influenced by the skill of the contestants. The more you understand about the strengths and weaknesses of the two teams, the more likely you are to make an intelligent bet and win.
Where do you turn to find the information that you need to make informed bets? Being familiar with the game you are betting on is obviously an advantage, although this is not strictly necessary if one is already accustomed to betting through a bookmaker. In that case, the research has already been done, but the information is presented from the perspective of the bookmaker and can be difficult to use effectively. Professional punters can bet based solely on the line given by the bookmaker, but it takes years of experience to do this well.
To make an informed bet, one has to go to the statistics. That means one has to go to the historical record to see how the team has performed in the past in order to determine its strengths and weaknesses. This research can be a truly daunting undertaking as there is an enormous amount of statistical data out there. For this reason, most people who choose to do their own research choose a few key statistics that they believe are most important and then create their own betting formula based on these. This does lead to more informed bets but cannot compare to the complex formulas employed by professional punters and bookmakers that use an enormous number of factors, both past and present.
For the casual bettor that has no desire to become a full-time gambler and thereby become a true expert, the best option is to get access to expert knowledge. In general, the true experts are fully aware of the value of their knowledge and try to capitalize on it. For those willing to share their knowledge with others, this is usually done through tips & picks services or by selling systems.
Experts using their knowledge to offer tips (advice on odds or point spreads) and picks (who will win or lose) often do so through paid services. These paid services can be premium-rate telephone services (09xx in the UK, or 1-900 in the US), subscription websites, subscription email lists, and so on. While the tips and picks are provided to subscribers, the methodology used to make them is not shared. Further, such a service is effectively an additional commission on the bet as the bettor has to spend money to get the pick before the bet is even made.
True experts rarely sell their entire system, the methodology and formulas they use to make winning tips and picks, but it does happen occasionally. The problem is that the average consumer frequently can not tell which systems were designed by actual experts and which were developed by shysters. There is no way to get around this problem altogether, but there are clues that can help you avoid being scammed. For example, sports betting systems that use progression betting are probably scams since progressive betting was designed for – and is only applicable to – games of chance with roughly even odds. Other things to look for include a solid money-back guarantee and proper customer service, as most scams do not provide these.
To make money at soccer betting, knowledge is key. You can do your own research and devise your own techniques, but unless you are willing to invest an enormous amount of time and energy into it, you will always be at a disadvantage. However, if you can acquire the knowledge of an expert, you can bet like a professional without going through years of trial and error as most true experts do.
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