How to Minimise Risk28th February 2019 / Julian
Every punter is different, and for some their philosophy is to play with tiny stakes by placing huge 20-fold accumulators.
For others who are slightly more cosmopolitan (reckless), big stakes are thrown around like Monopoly money without any real research into the story behind the selection: the form, the head-to-head record, things like that.
But the smart cookies have realised that, ultimately, you need to consider your football betting to be a kind of business. Clever company directors make investments that offer maximum potential for success while minimising risk, and by utilising the correct markets – at the right time – it is easy to see how this ethos can be replicated in your betting activity.
Building a Bankroll
Most businesses start from scratch with a minimal cash investment – as do punters, who deposit a small lump sum in their account to act as a float. The key from here is to keep turning over profit; otherwise we will have to make another deposit, and this starts us on the path to long-term losses.
So how do we build our bankroll?
Well, the most obvious way is by taking on low risk bets that offer maximum potential. The returns are almost irrelevant; at this stage we should be looking to consistently add profit to our bankroll no matter how small.
Here are a two tips to help build your bankroll:
1. Flat Staking
The temptation for all bettors is to keep their bets a theoretical probability of being successful, and then staking accordingly: with more being wagered on the hot picks and less on the more risky options.
But this assumes that the hot pick comes in. If we use a working example, imagine you had bet £20 on Arsenal to beat West Ham and then £5 each on Chelsea to beat Tottenham and Man United to beat Southampton. The logic here is that you are very confident that the Arsenal bet will be a success and not so much the other two.
But look what happens if Arsenal were to draw and then both Chelsea and Man United on. Even though two of your three selections have come in, you still be running a loss due to the amount lost on the Gunners.
But if you had bet £10 on each of your selections in the above example you would have turned a profit, as two-out-of-three ensures a positive return. This is a crucial point, and should be your mindset: think winners, not how much money you *might* win.
Again, thinking about your betting as a business, you wouldn’t invest all of your company’s funds in stock or investments would you? Of course you wouldn’t: you’d dedicate a small percentage of your available resources to those investments and ensure you had a nice bankroll to carry forward.
It is exactly the same in betting. Generally, it is advisable to bet between 2-5% of your bankroll each time, depending on if you prefer backing favourites (here 5% is okay) or outsiders/multiples (2& maximum). So, if you deposit £10 into your account, keep your bets to 20p-50p based on the nature of your betting strategy.
Remember, if you bet too much each time and go on one of those demoralising losing streaks, it’s not just your confidence that will be shattered; your bankroll will be too.
Let’s put our business hats on again: minimising risk – particularly early on in your company’s existence – is crucial in helping to build a steady bank balance. But how can punters minimise risk when they have no control over the outcome of the selections they wager on?
Well, we can certainly take back some of the advantage that the bookmakers have by following some golden rules.
The double, the treble or the accumulator have long been the favourite of punters across the globe. With multiplied odds, this – on the surface at least – enables us to secure a greater return on our investments.
But with each leg we add to our accumulator, the more risk we take on. Because let’s face it, in the standard win/draw/lose betting market, we start with a 33% chance of our bet being successful. No more, no less. Of course, we can do things that give us a theoretical advantage – picking favourites playing at home, checking team news, form guides etc – but ultimately that 33% never changes.
Add another selection and your probability of both coming in goes down to 10.89%. Add another and your chance of success becomes 3.59%. Hopefully that makes the reasoning clearer to understand.
Bet Type is Key
Keeping the above in mind, there are actually thinks we can do to improve our success ration. Think about bet types and markets where the numbers are stacked more in our favour. For example, the Both Teams to Score market is a simple yes or no equation; so you will always have a 50% chance of winning here no matter what (as long as you keep to a single of course!).
Another bet type that is becoming more and more popular is Double Chance. Here, you are betting on a team to win or draw (essentially avoid defeat). Your chance of success? A cool 66%. There aren’t any more risk-averse markets than this.
Of course, the odds for singles as opposed to accumulators, and Double Chances bets compared to outrights, are less, but remember the points we made above about long-term profit accumulation.
Do Your Homework
This is the only way to theoretically skew the percentages in our favour. Sit down with the newspaper or your preferred electronic device and pour through the fixture lists; checking team news, injuries and suspensions, current form (home and away), head-to-head records with their opponents, percentage win/draw/loss etc.
By doing your homework, you are able to bet with more authority and certainty….and no matter how the bookmakers price up their markets, this will ensure you can redress the balance of power.
It’s a simple formula but one you must keep in mind at all times when logged into your betting accounts: flat staking 2-5% of your bankroll on ingle bets that have a 50% or higher chance of winning is the best way to secure long-term, consistent betting profit.
The tip is based on the personal opinion of the author. No success is guaranteed. Please gamble responsibly. 18+
* All mentioned odds were valid at the time of writing. Betting odds are subject to fluctuations. Please check the current odds with the respective bookmaker!
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