Focus on one sport
As a sports bettor, you should always strive to focus your betting as much as possible. I recommend that you only bet on one single sport and preferable only on games in one particular league. You can choose two sports or two leagues if they are played at different times of the year. You should never bet on more than one sport or league at the time.
Why you should focus one sport
The reason you should focus on one sport is straightforward. It increases your chances of being successful. It increases your chances of winning money. You might think you have a better chance of winning money the more bets you place, the more sports you bet on. This is simply not true. Most losing punters are placing too many, not too few bets. Your goal should always be to place the right bets, not as many bets as possible. An essential part of becoming a successful sports bettor is to learn the discipline required to place fewer bets. To only place the bets that provide you with a lot of value, that provide you with good odds of winning money.
What do I mean by this?
Let us look at a few examples:
You feel that there is a 75% chance that Liverpool will win their next game games against Blackburn. The sportsbook gives you a 1.20 return if you bet on Liverpool as the winner. Ie you win USD120 if you bet USD100 and Liverpool wins. Liverpool seems very likely to win this game, and it is easy to get tempted into this bet. But the truth is that this bet offers you a negative implied value and it should never be placed. This bet will lose you money over time. You will earn a 20% return every time Liverpool wins, but you will lose your entire bet when Liverpool loses. Liverpool has a 75% chance of winning which tells us that they, on average, will lose one game out of 4. After four games you will have won USD60 on the tree games Liverpool won and lost USD100 on the game they lost. Overall you are down USD 40. Each bet you place have an implied negative value of USD 10. You should not make this bet.
Now let us assume that you in the same game would get the odds of 4.25 if Blackburn wins. The odds imply that the sports book think that odds of Blackburn winning is a lot lower than the 25% you calculate it to be. If you make this bet you are likely to lose. You will only win it one time in four. This bet does, however, offer you positive value and you should consider making this bet despite the fact that you are likely to lose the bet. Why, because you will earn money over time making this bet. Over the same four games as earlier Liverpool will win 3 games and you will lose USD300. Blackburn will win the forth game and this win will net you USD 425. USD425 is more than the USD400 you have bet in total. You have made USD25. Each bet you place have an implied positive value of 6.25%. This is enough for you to make a profit. A higher implied value is even better.
Calculating implied value
To be able to spot games that offer a positive implied value you have to be able to make your own calculations as to how likely each outcome is for a certain game. You then place the likely hood of each outcome in relation to the odds offered by the sportsbook to find bets that provide you with a positive value high enough to make it worth placing the bet. How high the positive value has to be for the bet to be worth making is up to you to decide. The higher the implied positive value you require to make a bet the lower the risk you will take.
To be able to calculate the odds of each outcome for each game you need to know a lot about the sport. The more you know about the sport and league in question the more precise predictions you can make and the more successful you can become. A successful sports bettor is a sports bettor that knows more than the people setting the odds.
Keeping up to date with all the news and making sure that you know more than the sportsbook takes a lot of time. This is why you should focus your efforts as much as possible. It is almost impossible to be an expert on all sports. This is especially true if you have a regular job outside of sports betting. In this case, it is almost impossible to know everything that happens in the world of sport. It can often be too hard to know all that happens within one sport. Your goal should, therefore, be to focus on one small part of the sport in question, one league. This allows you to make sure that you know enough to make money. To make sure that you know more than the people setting the odds for the sportsbook.
Keep in mind that the information that you can read in the sports section of your news paper is available to everyone. The sportsbook is going to know this info when they set their odds. Your goal should be to make sure that you know information that isn’t publicly known. Information to obscure for most people to know about it. Read the forums devoted to the teams, read fan newsletters and the teams official websites, the player’s twitter, etc. Make sure that no information, rumor or gossip pass you by. This is the information that gives you an edge and allows you to make money. Making sure that you stay up to date with all this information is a lot of work and you will not be able to do so unless you focus your efforts as much as possible.
You often hear that knowledge is power, well in sports betting knowledge is money, and you should only bet on games where you know everything.