One of the tricks to be a successful gambler is spotting the trends that form and statistics cannot.
Knowing football isn’t enough, but understanding the approach some teams take and exploiting that knowledge can lead to big rewards, if you do it right.
One area that is ripe for the clever gambler to exploit is the under or over 2.5 goals market. Understanding that particular field is one of the betting strategies suggested by online bookmakers and tipsters. They suggest analyzing past scoring records to pick sides likely to concede, or indeed likely to score plenty of goals.
The first team that are catching the eye this season are Portsmouth, a side currently likely to be under 2.5 goals. They’re fighting at the very top of League One, looking for a return to the Championship, a level befitting of the 2008 FA Cup winners.
Fratton Park – By Mark Freeman – Flickr: Portsmouth (1) v CHELSEA (1), CC BY 2.0,
Portsmouth keep things very compact at the back, looking to hit sides on the break with a fast bank of three players behind a target man, usually Ollie Hawkins. Their approach is perfectly suited to away matches, games in which the opposition come and attack.
At Fratton Park, that isn’t always the case and that is worth considering when looking for a shock. They’ve lost to Gillingham and Wimbledon at home this season, drawing with Shrewsbury and Wycombe too. On their travels, their first nine games brought seven wins and two draws.
They’re much more likely to win away from home, which is always worth considering, as well as likely to feature in low scoring matches despite being league leaders.
Two more sides likely to be upsetting your coupons this weekend are West Brom and Middlesbrough. Both are battling for a Premier League return and if they’re at home, they would usually be fancied to take all three points.
It is worth examining the other markets though. West Brom have been scoring for fun and bagged 22 times at home in the opening eight fixtures. However, they also conceded 12 times in those games, making them the second leakiest defence in the division. There are often good prices to be found in the ‘both teams to score’ market and the Baggies are ones to watch.