Betting on the Underdog
It’s a question that you ask yourself each time you think about placing a bet, should I bet Favorites or the Underdogs?
The payout you get from betting on the Favorites is almost always minimal while betting on the underdogs, while being risky, can help you in getting a big return if they actually manage to pull of the upset.
Favorites tend to be a surebet, but the more likely for a favorite to win a game the lower the payout or lower odds, to the point were a $100 bet could win $25 and who in his sane mind would want to risk $100 to winning 4 times less that?
But who decides which odds to assign a certain team? The oddsmaker, which builts odds based on public opinion or sentiment. It is a game of supply and demand, as bets pour into the likely winner odds shift to the underdog while reducing it for the favorite.
But the public isn´t always smart is it? Sometimes they fix odds based on too basic asumptions and do not look deep into details that could determine very different odds. This is were you as a “smart bettor” step in to master the game, bet on the favorite ONLY when the payout is worth it and bet on the underdog when the public is not looking into the right piece of information and actually has it all wrong.
Bet on the Underdog when there is a discrepancy between public opinion and the actual reality of the teams facing each other. These type of bets were the underdog actually has a chance of winning over the favorite and the payout is more that 2x the initial bet are called Value Bets, and they are the key to success.
Everybody likes to see the Underdog doing well but when it comes to lay some money most bettors tend to go with the favourites, in fact sports bettors tend to bet on the favourites far more often than they should. No one likes to lose and the fear of losing drives the average bettor to go with the crowd almost every time. This creates an odds disparity to take advantage off, too much money on one side while too little on the other, whoever bets the underdog will win big by taking the risk. But when should you bet the underdog?
Advantages on Betting the Underdog
Let’s consider a scenario of two matches were you are betting on the favorites on both games. If one of the bets results in a win and the other one in a loss then the overall result will be a loss, because the bookmakers commission known as vigorish, which is about 5% of the total bet, is also charged along with a winning bet.
When betting only on the favourites you need to win about 80 to 90% of the time to pull out a profit.
Now let’s consider the scenario of two games were you are betting on the underdogs. If one of your bets results in a win and the other one results in a loss you will still have enough money as return to cover your bet plus the vigorish and also turn in a decent amount as profit. When betting on the underdogs you only need to win about 40- 45% percent of the bets to be profitable.
In conclusion if you decide to bet on favorites only to be in the money you have to win 9 out of 10 bets, while if you decide to bet on underdogs only you would only need to win 6 or 7 out of 10 to be in the money. Betting underdogs can actually be less risky when it comes to being money wise.
Underdog Betting System Example
As stated before the typical odds for a favorites win is pretty low.
Let’s consider the case of two games were you are betting 1,000£ each on the favorites both having an odd of 1.6. This is a favorite betting system and although it might first appear as the safest bet results are not so good:
One of your picks ends up winning while your other pick loses it’s game.
Game 1 – 1000£ bet- 1700£ winning – Profit 700£
Game 2 – 1000£ bet – 0 winning – loss 1000£
So even after getting one of your bets correct you ended up with a loss of 300£.
Now let us consider an underdog betting system, the case of two games were you are betting 1,000£ each on the underdogs both having an odd of 2.5. One of your picks ends up winning while your other pick loses.
Game 1 – 1000£ bet – 2500£ winning – 1500£ profit
Game 2 – 1000£ bet – 0 winning – 1000£ loss
*Even after losing one of your bets you ended up with a profit of 500£ .
Beware of the Bookmakers
Most sports books have the habit of showing too much confidence on the favorites simply by taking into account the number of high profile players they have in their team.
The prime example for this would be the game between Burnley and Manchester City in the 2014/15 Premier League season. Burnley had already held the defending Premier League champions to a draw in City’s own turf earlier in the season. City also came into this game on the back of a miserable run of form.
The bookmakers saw it differently though they couldn’t even for a second think that a Burnley team could produce an upset against their more illustrious opponents, and as a result offered high odds for a Burnley win.
In the end Burnley ended up stunning their opponents and anyone who placed their money on Burnley ended up making a nice big profit. So never make a decision based on the odds offered by the bookmakers, be sure to crosscheck everything with your own bit of research before placing a bet.
Handicapping underdogs is the key to sucess in sports betting
People term a team as an underdog for a reason, they may get the win over the favorites once in a while but more often than not they end up in the losing end.
So never make blinds bets on the underdogs and the same can be said about the favorites they may not lose always but when they lose they can take a chunck from your pockets. Doing proper research on the games before placing a bet can help a big way in placing winning bets more often than not. This is called sports handicapping and your rate of success will be determined by the accuracy of your system to rate team, players and managers.
Sportbooks like to even the game by offering point spreads on the underdog. Point Spreads are additional points or goals a sportbook gives a team to add-up to the end result. For example if Getafe losses 1 – 2 against Real Madrid with a point spread of +2 it means that for the Point Spread bet Getafe won 3 – 2 . And you win the bet. Understand what point spreads are and how they can leverage the advantage of betting the underdog.
Photos and videos featured on this post are used under a creative commons license, free to use and edit – Wikipedia Commons www.commons.wikimedia.org and Youtube permission to feature under its TOS.