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Bookmakers Soccer Predictions - Top Verses Secondary Leagues - 2008-09

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2010-02-03 07:03:24     
Article by Les Kane

The accuracy of bookmakers' soccer predictions differs between top and secondary European leagues. Assuming that bookmakers try to minimize payoffs for the winners, their predictions' accuracy can be estimated by comparing betting odds and real match outcomes. Bettors can make profits by analyzing the accuracy of the bookmakers' predictions for each league and focusing on leagues where their performance is poor. This article compares between the accuracy of soccer predictions made by bookmakers for top vs. secondary European leagues during 2008/09 and the first half of 2009/10 seasons.

DATA AND METHODS

To compare the accuracy of the bookmakers' predictions for top vs. secondary European leagues, the authors of this article analyzed the match outcomes and average betting odds of 10 top and 10 secondary European soccer leagues from the following countries: Austria, Britain, Holland, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Scotland, Spain and Turkey.

The predictions' accuracy was analyzed by comparing between the bookies' smallest betting odds and the real match outcomes. In addition, the possible profit of a bettor who places his stake on the bookies' favorites was calculated according to the average betting odds of more than 20 bookmakers.

SUMMARY

After analyzing the statistics of bookmakers' soccer predictions, the conclusion was that their accuracy is better for the top leagues in comparison to the secondary ones. The percent of matches successfully predicted by bookmakers varies between 54% for the top leagues vs. 44% for the secondary leagues. The average possible 1x2 profit of the bettor constitutes -3% vs. -13%. The average estimated profit of a bet on total under/over 2.5 equals to -10% vs. -25%.

Thus, it is safe to conclude that the bookmakers' predictions should not be used as betting tips neither in betting for the top leagues nor for the secondary ones, due to the negative expected profit for bettors.

-- The only profitable league among the European leagues from the countries listed above was the Austrian Bundesliga (+10% 1x2 profit) with more than 60% of correct match predictions. The main reason is that this league is characterized by high home win statistics.

-- The most unprofitable among the top leagues were the Scottish Premier (-15% 1x2 profit) and the German Bundesliga (-8%).

-- The most unprofitable among the secondary leagues were the Belgium 2e klasse (-25%), the French Liga 2(-18%) and the Scottish Division 1 (-15%).

-- There were no profitable leagues among the secondary European leagues.

-- The most significant difference between the top and the secondary leagues was observed for the Spanish Primera (+4%) and Segunda (-20%) Divisions.

Therefore, secondary European leagues, especially Belgium 2e klasse, French Liga 2 and Scottish Division 1 are the most attractive for bettors, since the accuracy of the bookmakers' prediction for these leagues is poor, resulting in high potential payoffs.

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