So how do we actually create a predictive model for football games based on Poisson distribution?
The table below shows the associated odds for these probabilities: Remember that bookies include an edge — called an overround — when they work out there odds so that they can guarantee profit.
It is therefore important to add this margin into your odds to best reflect this overround. Simply multiply the true odds by the margin, for example, Odds x 1. The table below shows the new odds with the margin included: Now comes the fun part; deciding on where to place your bets. You have your own odds and now need to compare these against the odds from bookmakers. This is the core of value betting which was discussed in a previous article.
If you get value, then you bet — although you may wish to qualify out some bets by doing additional research to see which players are injured, motivational factors, played in Europe mid-week etc. The below is used for illustrative purposes, but gives you an indication of the type of thing you may find when comparing the odds. In this scenario, the value is with backing the draw, backing the Aston Villa win and backing Under 2. Now go make some profit! If everything looks OK with the model, you will then need to expand it to include the same calculations for every other game in that league.
At the moment, we are only calculating the odds and bets for one match. Rather than use the same table, it makes sense to set up another 9 of these tables so that you can do one for each league game. It will be time consuming to start with, but try to get to a point where the spreadsheet can be as automated as possible — a version 2. For instance, with my model, I input the fixtures, then the attacking and defensive metrics are calculated automatically.
This is then pulled through to another sheet where the Poission Distribution formula calculates all of the odds. I then only need to manually add the odds for all of the games directly from the bookies, then the spreadsheet tells me which bets to place. The model stays the same, the only difference is the inputs.
As games progress and results are known, you will need to include these in your calculations. If your model is working on data from last season and not including data from this season, then it is likely to be out of date. In Steps 2 and 3, we used either a list of results or the league table to work out the numbers of goals and averages.
You need to find a way of incorporating these most recent results in your calculations. I simply add these to my list of results and ensure the formulas cover the new results. You may also choose to remove old results that you deem to be too long ago and now redundant. For example, if your model is based on 38 games 19 home, 19 away , then you would need to add the most recent home game whilst deleting the oldest home game to keep it at And there it is, your own predictive football model.
Obviously I will give a couple of caveats at this point as no predictive model can be spot on or take into account every factor in the world.
A few points to consider are:. I hope that this has been useful and you have plenty of hours of fun with your new spreadsheet. There are quite a few posts that I read online from time to time that advise players not to follow the statistics, if they want to win in sports betting. They claim that statistics are there to be challenged, as historic data and the frequency of a team scoring, for example, do not have any effect on our sports betting performance.
The ball spins without knowing any laws or statistics! Indeed, it is a totally respectable view, no objection on that. By completely rejecting the notion of statistics in sports betting is like deploring those who follow it.
Moreover, we should consider the fact that in every sport event, statistics are reported during the event.
At the same time, major sports news sites keep statistical data for many years to come. Yet you might say: Statistics just sell to a whole lot of people who think they may become winners following statistical models.
They are giving them the necessary hope to keep them into the game, to keep them interested. This is indeed an explanation that perhaps I should write about in the future. Having said that, I must also mention that at times betting systems emerge, which rely exclusively on the statistical analysis of the games.
What the heck, a part of these allegations must be true. Nevertheless, statistics in sports betting are applied extensively when building or improving a particular betting system. Now, I am not talking about the input variables of a system, such as statistics used in tennis matches.
A system that makes 5 points out of a sample of bets may be satisfactory. Yet, I would rather have a system that makes points tested on a sample of 10, games! And that is where mathematics and statistics make a huge difference in sports betting. Monday, September 17, Blog Write for Us!
Hand-picking a horse racing NAP. Big things expected of this son of Frankel as he targets…. A Guide to Tennis Handicap Betting. How to Analyze Charts and Prepare for Race. Slippage in Sports Trading: What it means and why you should…. Mathematics in sports betting: Just a simple equation The truth is that for most people betting on sports is more like a hobby — as it should be.
How do I win in sports betting? The answer lies on the equation! So there are two solutions: