Value betting is an area of sports betting that provides much difference in opinion. Quite simply, a value bet is one that provides good value for money. If you think that the chances of an outcome happening are 3/2 and you are able to get 7/1 then this should be considered a bet with good value.
Some people feel that looking for value bets is pretty pointless unless you are wagering huge sums of money. This is fair enough if you were to work at the extra return an odds increase of 0.1% would have on a £20 bet! Many other people see value bets as the way forward in many betting markets – even if you are looking to back with a minimal sum.
These days, punters are not limited to three or four bookmakers in their city centre, or queuing to bet against an independent bookie at a racecourse. Now that we have the internet, many new bookies have entered the market providing us with loads of choice and opportunities to improve on the odds we are offered. With all this competition it is quite easy to find an improvement in odds on a bet of 1.0 and in many cases the improvement can be much more.
Why look for Value Bets?
The way that bookmakers price bets make it very difficult for punters to make profits over the long term – in fact 95% of bettors fail to do so. It is up to you, as the punter, to take advantage in any discrepancies in odds that you see in your betting career. By noticing attractive bets you can help swing the odds more in your favour and severely increase the chances of your sports betting antics paying off.
A punter that follows value bets isn’t necessarily somebody that focuses the favourite outcome in a sports event or race. Most people that look for value bets will normally bet on outcomes that provide odds that are better that what they consider the true odds to be. This might be a bet through a bookie that is 100-1, when the bettor’s opinion is that the horse should be 300-1. If you were watching at a football match, for example Chelsea v Spurs, and you thought the chances of Chelsea to win were 80%, Tottenham 10%, and the draw 10% – the odds should be around 1.25 (100/80) for Chelsea to win, 10 (100/10) for the Spurs win, and 10 (100/10) for the draw.
Picking Value Bets
Most value bettors use odds comparison software to help source value. By comparing odds at the click of a button, it is simple for them to find discrepancies that they can use to make much more money. If you are not clued up enough to find your own value bets then check out some websites to see what other people are betting on. The Racing Post is a great source for betting tips as is Sporting Life. Each site has a number of seasoned professionals working for it that can spot value on a number of markets.