This is the final part of our series on the 'Holy Trinity' of Betfair trading, three key metrics that our view every trader should follow to have more success when football trading on Betfair.
1. Proper Pre-Match Research
2. Using inplay stats and the 'eye' test
3. Including motivating factors and situational advantages.
Today's focus will be 'Including motivating factors and situational advantages' with 10 ways we use these to our advantage. when trading on the Betfair exchange.
What do you mean by 'motivating factors and situational advantages'?
The reason we do not believe enough traders fully consider these factors is that they are not sure how to, or exactly what they are. This post will help explain that to you!
Motivating Factors - Quite simply these are a team's drives, are they galvanised to really want to push on to win a match? Is there an incentive for them to try to score goals.
Situational Advantages - Some of these are more obvious that others, for example: Does one side have an unexpected edge over the other? Maybe a red card means one team has an extra player to utilise. Maybe one team played a tough European game midweek and may struggle on the weekend.
Let's start with listing a few Motivating Factors -
It is essential in football trading that a team (or both if you are an overs trader) has the drive to want to win a match and score goals.
The team (or teams) must have something to play for in said game, so check that they do before trading that football match. Where this becomes extremely important is usually at the end of a football season, when some mid-table teams will pack up their bags for the summer holidays and not play to their full potential.
If a team has a bigger match around the corner they may be distracted and not fully motivated be aware of this and check the upcoming fixtures when trading on Betfair. Imagine Man Utd are playing a Champions League semi-final in three days, will they be fully focussed on their trip to Norwich that weekend? It would be a natural part of the human condition for them to be subconsciously thinking ahead.
Start of the season rust - Although both teams should be fully motivated at the start of a season this is not always apparent. It can also take players some time to 'get up to speed' and perform at their peak. Sometimes you will find a team is not quite ready in their first few games of a season because of this. Be very weary when trading the football markets on the Betfair exchange with only a couple of games of the season played! (We usually wait 8-10 games).
Is the game big enough for the club? The trend in the last 20+ years has been that the big clubs will take certain games less seriously than others. The domestic cups seem to be the biggest victim of this rather 'uninterested attitude' the big clubs will take. Think about it this way why are there so many cup 'shocks' in English football? Is it because the 3rd and 4th division teams are better than their Premier League counter parts? Of course not! It is often because the Premier League club is less interested in winning. Motivation is the key.
Let's move on to listing some 'Situational Advantages':
What should you consider that may or may not have been considered by everybody else in the Betfair trading market?
Could the team be tired? As mentioned above how often have we seen a side play a European game midweek only to look off colour the next weekend in their domestic fixture? It happens many times during the league season. Use this knowledge to your advantage, either take the team on or leave the match alone when football trading.
Red Cards - A red card will usually have a huge impact on a football match. To the extent that if I have not entered a trade, I will probably avoid the match. If I have already entered a trade I will have to assess carefully whether I want to stay in! The odds will usually move a lot on a red card so it is key to assess your position at that point.
Substitutions - Substituations can have a big impact on a football match, especially late on when the fresh legs may help galvanise the side that brings the player on. Keep an eye on this and if you notice the momentum switch, if the game looks more open or slows right down you will need to reasses your position. Or you can enter the Betfair market and trade the opportunity if you are not already in a trade.
A clear momentum change - Sometimes the stats or your 'eye test' when watching a football match will scream out that one side is looking like they will score next. Has the market accounted for this with the current odds? Or are the team playing better value and worth a trade? Often we have found the market does not greatly account for momentum in a match and their can be oppotunities to trade it as such.
Finally, why this all matters - there are two key things to consider once we have the extra information above:
Has it created a trading opportunity? This is essentially all we care about. Try to use this information to create an edge on the market, if the market has not considered these factors properly that is your chance to strike!
Are there enough red flags to now leave this match alone? The other key way to use this information is to filter out 'trap games'. If you find enough of these red flags when researching your trades then the match must probably be avoided. You should find it helps you dodge some of the trades you would have lost.
So here I have given 10 key considerations and briefly explained them.
As ever, I hope this advice helps! That is what I am here for to help you. I'll be back next time with a new series!