The Problem With Betting On VALUE…

If you read this blog regularly, or any other blog worth reading, then I am sure you will see the word “Value” mentioned many times. The main point being that if you arent taking good value prices then you simply wont win in the long run. Something, that out “The Mug” experiment seems to be proving as the season goes on.

The basic premise of “Taking Value” is that you are taking odds which represent a greater chance of the event happening then the implied chance that the odds are giving. This can happen at any odds range from 1.01 all the way up to 1000.

However, The main problem with betting on value is that…

Its boring!

Yes, I said it.

Taking value isnt the most thrilling way to punt and hence why the average punter doesnt want to take it.

If we take last nights football for example. It was indicated that Under 2.5 Goals in the Spurs-Wigan match was a good value bet @ 2.60 based on recent stats. However, the match ended 3-1 and obviously the bet didnt win. Then considering there was 4 goals in total you would probably feel a bit silly having bet there was only going to be 2 goals or less. However, when you are only taking value you have to develop a thick skin to this type of thing. Every man and his dog was going after Over 2.5 goals in this match which really killed the value and so the sensible move was to go with the Unders line.

Betting on a match to finish Under 2.5 goals is actually pretty boring, especially if you are watching it. Who would want to watch a football match and cheer for neither team to score?

However, the fact is that there is much more likely to be value in Under 2.5 goals then in Over 2.5 goals as every casual punter loves to bet on there being goals as opposed to there not being goals.

Another problem with only betting value is that you run the risk of …

Looking Stupid!

This is mainly reserved for when you are socialising with others and there is a sports event happening. Most people I know, know what I do and so when I am out and a sports event is on they might ask me for a tip. Since I am more inclined to look for value I often find that the answer I give them isnt the answer they want to hear as I am normally “tipping” the underdog due to their good value price. If you remember this post from last summer then this was a good time I tipped the underdog and it turned out to be terrific value and I looked like a genius but it doesnt always work out like that and when going for underdogs it rarely ever will.

I remember back at the 2006 Word Cup Final when I watched France V Italy with a few people. Everyone in the world was going for Italy in this match and I actually agreed. However, the price on France was too good to miss that day. I told everyone my money was on France for it even though I expected Italy to win which no one seemed to understand and to make things worse, Italy did win (on penalties) which then meant I had to endure hearing “I told you” for the rest of the evening and my explanations of taking a “good value bet” seemed to fall on deaf ears.

The average person just doesn’t realise that gambling isn’t just about being right but its about being right at the RIGHT price.


If you can overcome the fear of looking stupid and also the fact that Value betting isn’t as exciting as “favourite punting” then you should be in a good situation to start profiting from gambling.  I know because I have seen it for myself and I only wish someone had told me many years back!


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  1. Excellent post.

    I think the only way is to follow the value, but for my personality I leave high priced value bets alone. I just can’t seem to be able to cope with long losing runs.

    A value bet might be for a Half Time Full Time Draw/Away win. Due to the high price say 6 – 1, I would leave that bet and look for value in other areas.

    To take the above bet I would want to win roughly 20% of the time which means 2 wins out of 10 etc. A 3 – 5 losing stretch for me seems to affect my mentality and influences my next bets too much, sometimes too cautious sometimes too careless.

    Maybe over time and when I am more confident that I can be successful at gambling these bets will become easier to manage.

    1. Sports Trading Life says:

      I think you make an excellent point there.

      You really do have to play to your strengths and you arent alone with not being able to cope with losing runs as its the same for most people. As said, you can find value at all odds ranges so it doesnt always mean going for 10-1 shots, I have seen even 1.10 prices have some value in them!

      Do what works for you is the main thing!

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