Part and parcel of online football betting is being prepared to sit down and pore through statistics. Spending some time doing statistical analysis is designed to get you towards stronger bet selections when you hit an online sportsbook.
When you do, you will find the weekend football odds posted well in advance of kick-off. That’s a great thing because it allows you to take your time studying the latest form.
But those longer-term pre-match odds and stats cannot tell you everything. They don’t inform you about one of the biggest factors of all for football betting – the starting elevens of the opposing teams.
The Line-Up Issue
If you are looking at the weekend’s Premier League odds on a dull Tuesday night, then you may not get the truest reflection of what is to come. A simple example is a star striker picking up an injury during midweek training that keeps them out of the weekend line-up.
That could have a considerable difference in the expected goals factor for that team. It could be a visiting team missing their main centre half, which would naturally impact their cohesion across the back line.
Analysing changes to a team’s lineup is crucial. You have to factor in many things like injuries, suspensions and during the transfer windows, a player looking to jump ship. But the selection factor goes further than just a team missing a player or two.
If a manager has changed their midfield personnel for a certain fixture, then it could signal a change in tactics. If you see some creative players with attacking flair being switched out of the starting eleven for more conservative counterparts, then that is a big signal of intent.
It could mean a formation change where a team takes a more cautious approach to a game than usual. Maybe due to the loss of a star striker, a team is going out to set their stall to play for a point rather than a win.
This is why it is good to obtain a great working knowledge of a league and its teams, to get an understanding of different player’s roles. How important a factor team selection is in your betting can’t be understated. But what is the best way to handle this?
How To Get Over the Lineup
Prepare for contingencies. It is still worth taking the time to look through statistics and the current odds to get a general overview of a game. Even if it’s a few days out from the fixture, you can take what you know at the time and base your bet analysis on the perceived strongest teams meeting.
Reading into longer-term form is still vital because all teams go through injury and selection problems from week to week and make changes. The clubs at the top of the table are generally better suited to handling absences thanks to better squad depth.
So a piece of advice is to look ahead, but play your cards close to your chest until you have an idea of the lineups. Press conferences in the Premier League for example happen the day before matches – that’s when you can pick up on the news.
Once you know the line-ups and there have not been any surprises, then your original plan could be worth rolling with. If there has been a shake-up then making some adjustments to your original plans or holding off on them altogether would have to be considered.
If a club is going through an injury crisis then it’s probably a good idea to avoid your usual betting strategy on them until they get back up to full strength. You hear a lot about cohesion and teamwork. Certain players connect well together on the pitch and if that’s broken up, the same value of input may not be there.
But along with head-to-head statistics and current form, you need to absorb the latest football news and even look at betting tips that cover things like selection variables.
This is just as important as statistics. If a striker has netted in his last three matches and then is suddenly unavailable, that changes the whole betting landscape of goalscorer markets, totals and even the outcome.
Your goal is to leverage your position with information. Don’t put yourself in a spot where you place a bet only to find out afterwards that a major selection shake-up has happened that devalues it.
Taking team selection into consideration is just another part of the overall soccer betting puzzle alongside balancing your selections through statistical analysis and market value. You wouldn’t bet without those other aspects, don’t skip on the importance of team selection for your wagers either.