Betting on sports events has gained a lot of popularity in recent years bookmakers and betting offices are now omnipresent on the internet. One of the most popular sports to bet on is football, because it is the largest sport in the US, and with the start of the busiest betting season comes a lot of discussion about NFL predictions.
The method is always the same the bettor wagers an amount of money on a bet of their choice. If their prediction turns out to be correct they win an amount of money, equal to the odds of the bet, per unit of money invested. For instance, if a bettor wagers 3 units of money on a bet with odds 1.75, they will win 3*1.75=5.25, yielding a net profit of 2.25. If the prediction is incorrect the bettor’s wager is lost. The odds bookmakers use for their bets are based on probability. If the probability of a certain outcome showing up is 0.2, the corresponding odds would be 1/0.2 = 5, meaning every unit bet will result in 2 units returned if the bet is won. Obviously, bookmakers like to make a little profit, so when they believe the probability of a certain outcome showing up is 0.2, they will not use the statistically fair odds of 5, but will rather adjust this to for instance 4.5
From betting tipsters to financial advisors, past data is widely used to predict future events. Let’s be serious. If we had information from the future, it would be incredible. Could you imagine? In the movie, Back to the Future Part II Michael J. Fox traveled to 2015 and bought the Grays Sports Almanac planning to take it back to 1985 to bet on sporting events. And sure, if you could figure out a way to get some information that is not from the past and somehow from the future, that would just be the perfect business.
Prediction is not an easy business to be in, it can sometimes lead to two extreme impressions. When everyting goes as planned, they treat you as if you have prophetic abilities. When extreme events you considered aren’t even close to reality then expect a charlatan status.
Independent of what is being predicted there is one great likelihood, the exact prediction made will not occur, especially if there are a multitude of possible outcomes.
Using the past to predict the future
A useful method is to anchor to the past or general information. For example, we know that home teams score more than away teams. So when faced by two teams of equal strength, the best guess would be that the home team will win. Which half will have most goals in a soccer match? Well the second.
What could give us more insight is the measure of dispersion, such as the standard deviation, as this shows the amount of possible discrepancy from best estimate. This will be thoroughly explained further down.
In conclusion, anchor but don’t forget that the past performance is not an indicator of future results. Hence you need to be subjective, creative, judgemental and consider the case at hand, however don’t be overly whimsical because the major conclusion, remains that football matches will always be very hard to predict but just as it is exciting to watch it is exciting to take action in it, sign up now at http://heritagesports.eu