Lay betting is the second stepping stone for any rookie sports bettor. We all begin with straight bets, favoring the super popular teams to win, and they usually do just not all the time. The sports betting beginner goes “BOOM BOOM, BOOM” on his twitter account as his picks kick in time and time again, “this is so easy!”. Soon enough the strike rate fails and his balance goes red with just a few bets lost vs all those wins…

Lay betting strategy

The answer is obvious, when you bet only for Barcelona, Manchester United, Bayern, Juventus and the likes to win against small time opponents; the odds are going to be 1.3 – 1.4. That is a profit of 30% to 40% for every bet won.

In other words, by betting favorites only the bettor needs to win 4 of 5 games in order to make a small profit of 20% or 60% from his starting balance. A small gain from such a big risk which usually does not end well.

Lay betting focuses on the opposite strategy, to bet against the favorite.

And if you have ever seen a pro bettor talk on TV about his strategy, many of them claim to bet only on underdogs or “Value Bets”.

Lay betting requires more analysis, nerves of steel to go against the mainstream predictions, and money management understanding.

With lay betting you do not need to win 4 of 5 bets anymore, in fact you can win 1 of 7 or 10 bets and still be in profit. The odds will be 7 to 1 or even 15 to 1 or more.

The biggest lay betting example has to be Leicester in the 2015 – 2016 season, with odds of 500 to 1 to win the Premier League the ended doing just that, and a $10 bet would’ve returned $500.  

So how to successfully develop a lay betting system? We will go through the steps reviewing a real case from a bettingadvice.com user d@du18, who published a very interesting forum thread were he documents his entire lay betting journey, beginning with success and then watching how his balance drops. What’s interesting is not his system, which there isn’t any to start with, but the tweaks and suggestions from other users that could turn a sloppy strategy into a money making machine.

A Real Lay Betting Strategy in Action

D@du begins his forum thread with a very logical statement:

“We often see that without proper analysis we can’t predict which team will win the game (and neither this way but analysis does increase chances), and day after day we see how our bank decreases because we are greedy and can´t just bet a few games. By playing too many games we drink the bookie´s Kool Aid and go against the odds by betting on favorites that we think can´t lose.”

Here is an example, games for Sunday:

  • Milan 1.3
  • Inter 1.25
  • Barcelona 1.2
  • Real Madrid 1.3

If you are not good with odds we suggest to read our beginner’s tutorial with decimal odds, because at the spot you should be able to identify these odds are the worst payoff in the market. 20% to 30% in profit ARE NOT great odds.

Value Odds is what every successful punter should aim at, those begin at even odds, or 100% payoff. Pro’s aim at double payoff and beyond.

The above bets are the classic example of bad value judgement, bettors need to win 4 of 5 bets to end in profit, a small one. If you earn 30% then 4 bets won means 30% * 4 = 120%, or 20% profit. 20% after so much nail biting!!So if you risked $100 in total you made $20 after such a successful strike. Not worth it.

Now here is D@du lay betting strategy

Underdog betting value bets

A ticket holder of Leicester to win EPL 500 to 1

Do the entire opposite.

That’s right, find games with the super favorites and lay them all. The basis of this strategy is, favorites win most of the time, but not always. And when betting underdogs we only need to win around 30% of the games to end in profit.

Is it that simple? Is d@du now a millionaire for trying out such a simple but high paying technique?

Not at all, but through his thread he does make a point by showing the basic strategy does work more often than not, but not always and it usually ends in failure. Nonetheless, if the strategy is tweaked with real analysis it will soon become a money making machine.

Lay Betting Strategy Results

The entire betting experience is catalogued in his forum post, but here are his first results:

Club Brugge @ 1.24 (-2.4u)
Anderlecht @ 1.47 (+10u)
Standard @ 1.42 (-4.2u)
Aston Villa @ 1.97 (-9.7u)
Chelsea @ 1.34 (+10u)
Wigan @ 1.75 (-7.5u)
Sochaux @ 1.60 (+10u)
Dortmund @ 1.55 (-5.5u)
Leverkusen @ 1.78 (-7.8u)
Inter @ 1.51 (-5.1u)
Napoli @ 1.71 (+10u)
Almeria @ 1.81 (+10u)
Barcelona @ 1.17 (-1.7u)

In this round of games he came out positive, even though he lost most of his bets. All games were layed with a 10u stake.

D@du was successful for the first two months, no super big profits, but his strategy worked out.

The following month’s favorites began to win more often, and eventually he lost all of his balance.

Nevertheless, punters began to improve on his strategy and gave the following suggestions.

11 Steps for a Successful Lay Betting Strategy

Lay Betting System

A lay betting strategy that blindly lays all matches with super favorites hoping to catch a few surprises won´t work in the long run. Market liquidity have very accurate estimations, and if you are good a small profit can come out of it, but exchange commissions might eat your profit.

1. Experienced bettors move from popular sportsbooks like Bet365 to less promotional ones like Pinnacle, which offers better odds but less free bonuses.

2. Never use lay betting without research. Analysis can filter the games when the chances of laying a team are strong. Like laying Barca after they lose in the Champions, or a super classic game. Most teams take 2 or 3 games to get back in their feet after a major championship defeat.

Also be on the lookout on major player injuries or under performance sidesteps. Most teams have key players that provide the scores or keep the pace of the team, when they are not around the equilibrium falls apart. And Ronaldo or Messi if played on all games, like usual, there will be a time in the advance stages were their body falls apart from so much stress. Your goal is to predict when this could happen before it does and lay those games were their performance could fall.

3. Do not lay super favorites when they are in their best, that is plainly dumb. Laying Barca or Real Madrid against the weakest of teams when they are in top form is a waste of your money. Filter these games out and reduce your cost. Focus on games were the rivals seem to have a chance.

4. Lay small favorites in the German, French and Italian leagues. The EPL is also becoming more competitive and the super favorites are no longer winning every game, ask Leicester. Stay away from La Liga in Spain, were the top 3 clubs win almost all.

5. Tennis and European hockey leagues could also fit in your lay betting strategy.

6. Stats to look for when filtering your lay bets:

  • Top player injuries
  • International Championship elimination
  • Underdogs with surprisingly good form and strike of games won.
  • Playing international games in 3 days range.
  • Favorites that won an international game but seemed to have exerted too much energy, with a game in 2 or three days in the local league.

7. Never lay national team games.

8. Never Lay teams from former Russian countries or Cyprus.

9. Lay bet the following Latin American leagues:

  • Brasil Serie A
  • Brasil Serie B
  • Colombian League

10. Play odds above 1.8 only

11. Research statistics from all leagues selected, filter out teams that do not lose often at home, 75% win at home in the last 3 years. Target to lay bet teams under 75% home wins at nice odds.