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Although odds are constantly changing, in principle they only reflect probabilities. Calculating probabilities and comparing them to the odds for a particular event is key to any successful bettor and helps identify the holy grail of sports betting – value. Just because you have a particular horse or soccer team preference shouldn’t be a blind bet on their successes. Placing your money on bad value bets is the surest way to lose your betting account in the long run. Learning all about probabilities and odds will help you avoid this mistake.

Wett-Quoten verstehen

First of all, to be successful in sports betting , you need to understand odds . Once you understand what odds mean and how they work, it will be easy for you to determine how much money you can win on a particular bet. With this knowledge, you can compare the odds of individual sports betting providers to get the greatest profits.

Far too often, players rely on the past. Of course, it makes a difference whether a team is on a winning streak or a horse is in excellent shape. However, the focus is not on previous performance, but only on what happens next. We predict what will happen, so we need to determine the likelihood that a particular event will occur. Determining the probability with which your prognosis will come true and comparing it with the odds offered by the bookmaker allows you to determine bets with good value, i.e. a positive expected value.

betting odds

Die Bedeutung von Value

Even for professional gamblers, a 40% success rate in horse racing is a very good result and so you have to accept that most bets will not turn out to be profitable. Therefore, it is extremely important to find bets with the best odds and good value. Make yourself smart, take a look at oddschecker.com for an overview of all sports betting offers and their odds.
Setting up an account with multiple sites is a good idea. There are no fees, on the contrary. Every major sports betting provider offers new players a welcome bonus in the form of cash or free bets .
Some bookmakers are also very generous to loyal customers to ensure that not only new customers can enjoy bonus promotions. The more you bet, the more loyalty bonus you can expect, but that alone should never be decisive for placing a bet. Always wait for the right moment.

odds and probabilities


To distinguish good from bad value, you first need to learn all about different odds formats. Decimal and fractional odds are the most widely used and provide information about a bookmaker’s “risk vs. probability” assessment (see below).
Fractions are the traditional way of representing odds and are particularly used in the US, UK and Australia. For example, your bet has a fraction rate of 2/1 (two-to-one). This means that if you place a successful bet, you will get back double your stake and of course your stake yourself.
Divide the second number by the first to find your odds. A 13/2 basketball bet is basically a 6½ to 1 bet. In this case, if you place € 10 and win, you would get € 75 back. 6.5 times plus your original stake.

In the case of decimal odds, the most popular odds format in Austria, the stake is already included in the payout quota. In the case of our 2/1 example, the decimal odds would be 3.0 and the 13/2 bet would be 7.5.

odds formats

Risiko vs Wahrscheinlichkeit

Probabilities are very easy to explain, but we often find it difficult to use them properly. The numbers are anything but scary; 0% means there is absolutely no chance of this happening, 100% making sure something happens and in most cases the truth is somewhere in between.
Assume that four horses start a race with an identical chance of success. Then the probability of a victory for all horses would be 25%. If bookmakers didn’t want to make any money, they would offer all horses at odds of 3/1. In decimal format that would be 4.0. 100% divided by 4.0 = 25% chance of winning the race.

In reality, bookmakers are interested in making a profit. In our example, all horses had the same odds of 4.0 and had a 25% chance of winning the race (4 x 25% = 100%). The bookmaker will, however, determine the odds so that he comes to a total value of at least 105%.

Instead of four horses with odds of 3/1, he’ll offer you all of the horses for 11/4 (2.75 to 1). If you add the stake, this results in a decimal odds of 3.75. 100 divided by 3.75 is 26.66%. All four horses together have a probability of 106%, which is typical for odds at bookmakers.
In other words, the bookmaker’s odds give the impression that every horse has a 26.66% chance of winning, although in reality every horse has exactly 25% chance of winning and the bookmaker thereby has an advantage over you. If you get involved in a bet like this 100 times, you will sometimes win and sometimes lose, but in the long run the bookmaker will stay ahead of the game.

risk vs probability

Gutes Value für sein Geld bekommen

The question is, how can you give yourself an advantage over the bookmakers? Of course, you first need to know a lot about the sport or event on which you want to place a bet. However, it is not enough to determine the favorites, they must also offer a suitable quota.
Assuming you have determined your personal favorite in a horse race and this is offered with an odds of 7/4. If you place the bet and win, you will almost triple your stake. Sounds good, but you also think that two other horses have an equal chance of winning. While you have a firm belief in your horse, you have to admit that your favorite will probably only win every third time.
That means, to speak of a bet with good value here, the horse would have to be offered with at least 2/1 odds, an even higher one would be better. If this is not the case and the quota is lower, it is important to maintain discipline and not to bet on your favorite horse in this race.

Assuming your horse has a 25% chance of winning in your eyes and is offered at odds of 4/1, 5/1 or even higher, you have found a bet with good value. As long as your personal assessments and evaluations of the probabilities are correct, you are always able to determine bets with a high expected value (good value) and can make long-term profits.

In some cases it is important to act quickly. Quotas are constantly changing. A bet with good value can be gone in the next moment because the betting markets are already reacting to new bets that have been placed. Think about the chances of individual participants / teams and always keep an eye on the odds in order to strike at the right moment.

live betting strategy

Einsätze an Wahrscheinlichkeiten anpassen

If something happens 100%, you can put your entire sports betting account on it. In the vast majority of cases, however, you cannot be sure of this and should adjust your use accordingly. Suppose you were to wager $ 100 if you are 100% sure. Then you should bet correspondingly less with a chance of success of 20%. In this way, you can endure a dry spell and do not have to refill your betting account.

If you follow your gut feeling when it comes to bet sizes and move them up and down at will, sooner or later you will go down the drain. Betting markets, odds and probabilities are constantly changing and you should  therefore adjust your  stakes accordingly.

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