So football is back. For now.
But the big question many are asking is HOW do we approach football trading in the post-corona virus world?
Will much have changed or will it be business as usual?
This is a totally unprecedented event so it is impossible to say anything for sure but I do have a few theories
This is part 2 of a double header of posts. If you missed yesterday’s post where I discuss how I was trading football and how I coped during the COVID lockdown then you can check that out here.
#1 Relevance Of Pre-Corona form
We are now about to enter a world where we talk about football pre and post COVID.
There are going to be teams and players who were much better pre-COVID who are never the same again post-COVID.
The fact of the matter is we have no idea how some players will be affected by this mentally.
And so this can become quite a big problem for football traders who mainly use pre-game stats to determine their trades.
Just how reliable are any of those stats considering the different conditions football is being played under today?
My advice would be to throw all the “recent form” out of the window and just focus on the in-play action to find your trading angles.
Some might suggest treating it as if it were a new season which could be a good idea.
But this is not like the change from one season to the next, it is MUCH bigger than that. And what makes it so hard is there is nothing to compare it to.
Similarly, I would not suggest trading ANY matches without live pictures during this current situation. No matter how big the league or how well you think you know the teams.
Previously you would have a good idea of how teams will play without having to watch live but now we really have no idea.
When Dortmund were due to play Schalke before the pandemic they were priced at around 1.41.
They opened at 1.65 and have been steaming in ever since currently priced at 1.55 which you would think means there is value on offer but who really knows?
It could be a steal or it could be that the Dortmund players have all been badly affected by the situation and/or the BCD aspect.
Nobody knows and we won’t really know for sure until they get on to the pitch, which is why the market doubt is there and which leads me on the next point…
#2 Expect World Cup Style Liquidity And In-Play Price Flips
With the markets not having any idea how teams will be affected by this the good thing for the in-play football traders is that you will see some pretty wild markets when the matches kick off and some severe price corrections happening in-play before your very own eyes.
The liquidity is going to be HUGE and similar to what we see during the World Cup on some of these matches especially with so many people at home with nothing better to do than watch.
If a team is dominant, you will see money pouring in backing them and moving their price and vice versa.
If a match is expected to be dull and then the action starts hot you might even see the under 2.5 goals price drift. Yes it could it get that crazy.
Check this screenshot from World Cup 2018, the 0-0 price drifted once the match kicked off due to the huge amount of goal mouth action and the huge liquidity in the markets that has the power to move prices in directions they shouldn’t usually go in.
And so when we trade matches during the world cup, or any similar big tournament, we never look at the recent form since there isn’t any recent form to go by.
It is a matter of watching live and picking your opportunities out.
After a few matches back we can start to make better judgements about form and trends but for now the best information you can get is going to be on the pitch.
#3 Home Advantage Behind Closed Doors?
There simply isn’t enough data to find out if home advantage is significantly affected when played with no fans present.
My theory is that home advantage would still be present due to the familiarity aspects and the away team travel factor.
And my advice would be not to overthink this part of things until we actually have some clear data that shows that home advantage is less in BCD matches.
And even then you would expect the markets to have caught on to this fact also and the prices will adjust.
If you stick to #1 then it won’t matter
#4 Silly Season Extended
Something else to keep in mind is that we are approaching the silly season time of the season when there are many times with nothing to play for.
And so if you think about teams with nothing to play for playing in empty stadiums you can imagine there will be a fair few dead rubber matches to avoid.
So it is especially important you pay good attention to the league tables and fully understand the team motivations before EVERY match.
Some of these teams just want the season finished so they can get paid and move on.
But some of these teams are fighting for survival.
Whilst the form guide might not be much use, the league table could give you a very big clue as to who is taking a match seriously or not.
#5 Five Subs Rule
Probably the biggest change is in the introduction of teams being allowed 5 substitutions each.
Not every league will use this rule but it is expected most will and this could be quite the “gamechanger” in that it can be something that will literally change games.
We now have the possibility that a team could change their WHOLE attack during the second half and so as a football trader it can create opportunities.
There might be some matches that are dull with hardly anything happening but if you pay attention to the subs being used you might see the matches come to life as more attackers are thrown on.
You might see a team losing suddenly throw on 5 new players and you could get a totally different game after that.
Also, the fresh legs aspect should hopefully mean more late goals rather than matches petering out in the late stages since the players are so tired.
With matches involving this rule change, you should expect the unexpected once those changes are made.
So we will have to treat this summer of football as if it were the world cup.
We can’t really judge any of the teams until we have seen them play and match reading is going to be most important skill of all.
It might even be better not to look at any of the pre-corona form at all in case it skews your judgement.
If/when we complete the 19-20 season we can expect the 20-21 season to be played under similar conditions so this next few months will be an interesting learning process for many of us.
Best of luck to all those diving back into the markets after this unexpected break and I hope the above article helps you out in some way.
I had many asking about the public opening of Ultimate Football Trading that was sadly postponed due to the virus.
And I know some of you have been waiting around 6 months now for the next opening but it is looking possible there might be time to open it for a public enrollment in June.
So keep an eye out for that and if you want to join the waiting list then click here for more details.
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