Every sports fan experiences an adrenaline rush when their favorite team is playing. You can feel the energy increase while the attackers chase a goal. And you get to the edge of your seat once your team is at risk of losing.
If you’re like many sports fans, you’ve predicted a handful of matches correctly. Maybe you predicted last year’s Super Bowl winners correctly. Or perhaps you rightly backed Daniil Medvedev to win the US Open last September.
All the same, it’s one thing to predict one match correctly. It’s a different ballgame to do it over and over. In light of that information, below is a list of factors to keep in mind when betting on sports.
Sports betting odds are a reflection of what sportsbooks believe will happen in a match. Usually, bookmakers have odds for the home team, a draw or the away team.
Nowadays, you can find tons of things to bet on in a single match. There’s the total number of points or goals, correct scores, goal scorers, half-time leaders, second half leaders and proposition bets.
Regardless of what you plan to bet on, check the odds given by your favorite sportsbook. If you don’t have a reliable bookmaker, check out bestbettingsites.com for a guide on the best USA betting sites.
Still on odds, learn to find high-value odds. You see, bookmakers don’t provide fair odds all the time. A match where England has 1.15 odds to beat Monrovia (12.00) won’t make you good money.
However, a game in which France has 2.5 odds to beat Croatia (3.2) could provide great value. Here, you have a chance to double or triple your money depending on which side you pick.
In every sports competition, there are three types of teams or players. There’s the team in excellent form. Think of the current division leaders in the NBA, NFL or the NHL.
Then there’s the team in terrible form—teams fighting relegation, and tournament knockouts. The last type of team is the inconsistent kind. It wins some. Next, is spirals into a losing streak.
With that in mind, it’s easy to know where a team or player falls as far as form is concerned. Start by checking the logs. If you’re wagering on a Major League Game, check the division and conference rankings.
If you want to bet on international football, check the tables. Logically, the top teams after a few matches are in great form. By comparison, last-placed teams are in terrible form.
Which team should you bet on? Avoid inconsistent teams. Instead, bet on clubs in great or poor form. Keep in mind there are numerous bet types, so you can always wager against a bottom-placed side
Head to Head Records
The next factor to consider before you bet on a team is to check the head to head records. Let’s say the away team has beaten the home team in the last ten matches, regardless of the tournament.
There’s a high likelihood they will again. But this isn’t always a guarantee. Due to that, some betting experts advise beginners to not pay much attention to this factor.
A team might have lost to its opponent in the last four matches. But maybe the opponent is fielding inexperienced players this time. Perhaps it’s the finals and each team will perform at its level best.
As such, look at head to head records for a feint idea of which team will be the favorite. Also, it helps you discover data about the average number of points/goals scored, top scorers and playing styles.
If two teams usually score each other constantly when they meet, you can expect a high-scoring game.
Overall Team Quality
Sure, Nottingham Forest defeated Barcelona in 1980. But do you really believe Forest’s current crop of players can defeat Barca? This is why it’s important to compare the quality of players and coaches in both sides.
Generally speaking, teams with better players tend to win. This isn’t always the case, though. As such, don’t underestimate the underdogs. Instead, look at its players and their performance in the last few games.
Have they upset any big team recently? Have they frustrated any side in the top four even if they lost? In other words, look at the overall quality of a team. If one team is superior in quality and has been winning consistently, you have a potential winner.
Tournament and Schedule
Which tournament are you betting on? Because if it’s a minor competition, many top teams field their rotation players. Alternatively, they might become complacent and underestimate their opponents.
Another factor that could affect a team’s performance is its schedule. A tight schedule will usually force coaches to alternate players. And this means there could be a game where a good franchise has players with little chemistry on the field.
Against that backdrop, choose a tournament. Preferably, pick a major competition like the Major League. Then find a team with the least congested schedule. Usually, this team will field its best players even when facing a much weaker opponent.
Keep in mind the stakes are often high in big games. Every team wants to win or rescue a point. As such, you have to research comprehensively before you place a bet.
Injuries, Lineups and Motivation
Plenty of things can affect the outcome of a sports game. Let’s start with injuries. If key defenders, midfielders or attackers are out with injury, a team’s quality reduces. In turn, this reduces its chances of winning.
Next is the lineup. An NBA team could be leading in the Western Conference. But if it benches its best players, its chances of winning reduce drastically. Motivation also influences a team, especially in important games.
If a team is fighting for a playoff spot against a team that’s already qualified, it will be more motivated. Likewise, a team that’s already knocked out of a competition will have little to fight for. Keep these factors in mind when deciding how to place a bet.