I was watching a game the other day that highlighted a point that I believe has always rang true in football betting. The game was in the German Bundesliga between Stuttgart and Wolfsburg (25/08/12). Wolfsburg, the away side managed to win the game 1-0 in a closely fought battle. We at TeamTerry didn’t tip on the game due to the fact it was a tough game to call, and no Asian Handicap options stood out any more than another – no value.
For those who didn’t see the game, it remained 0-0 until the final few minutes. Stuttgart won a penalty in the 87th minute after Ibisevic was brought down by Emanuel Pogatetz. The Bosnian took the penalty, but it was saved by the keeper – parried back into his path. He had the goal at his mercy but snatched the shot, blazing it wide. 3 minutes later, the away side went up the other end scored the winner. Painful, I know.
This is a great example of how no matter how much research and reasoning is behind a tip, or when betting; you simply can’t factor in these types of instances that ultimately determine a game. You can feel as though you know everything about a team: the stats, the form, the match importance – but you can never know that the keeper will guess the right way with a penalty, or that given an open goal opportunity, a professional footballer will miss the target. Games are decided by moments of brilliance and uncharacteristic mistakes. Sure you can know that some players are more prone to mistakes, or more likely to provide moments of brilliance for that matter, but are for the most part unquantifiable.
A tipster may have tipped a home win for the Stuttgart game, and on paper, he looks to have lost by a long way – getting the result completely wrong. However, he was an uncharacteristic mistake away from being correct (presuming had Ibisevic scored the penalty, they’d have held on to their lead). Alternatively, a tipster may have tipped an away win, and on paper, looked to get it spot on, when in fact he was extremely lucky – fine margins.
This happened all the time in football, and other sports. A 30 yard free-kick, a bad refereeing decision, a sloppy back-pass, the list goes on. These are the events that if you could quantify accurately, would give you an unbelievable betting advantage over the bookies. Answers on a postcard please…