Do you know how much the bookmakers control what their customers prefer to bet on? Read on to find out the true value of some of the popular betting forms.

Oldest trick

Like the lottery, the idea of ​​winning a significant amount that can provide a person for the rest of his life, with just one small bet, finds its many fans among betters, forcing them to part with their money. Many gamblers think that the difference between betting and the lottery is that there is a lot more control in betting, but even if this seems to be true, the choice of the bookmaker itself matters a lot.

Several bookmaker companies have had and will have a significant influence on what players prefer to place their bets on. This is sometimes done through sophisticated marketing moves that highlight certain events, offering special offers and thereby “boosting” your chances in the market, or presenting certain types of bets in an easy-to-use format.

Bookmakers today have gone so far as to provide an opportunity to fully immerse themselves in the process, and even ask the bettor to choose which chances of success are preferable for him, or “accidentally” give a selection of ready-made bets, thereby offering their clients to refuse altogether from analytical work. As bookmakers take more control over what players bet their money on, it makes the already ghostly odds of winning the much-coveted jackpot even more microscopic.

Football Betting: Start

Football betting was originally a form of entertainment. One such example is the pooling system used in the UK, developed by Littlewoods in 1923. She is known for offering high financial rewards for a small stake: fans were given a coupon outside of football stadiums and asked to fill it in according to what they thought was the most likely outcome.

This system evolved over time into newspaper coupons that could be cut, filled in, and then mailed or handed over to a pooling agent. Littlewoods offered a choice of the number of betting options, always guaranteeing at least one winner per week using a scoring system among all coupon holders.

A similar system – pari-mutuel – originated in France as a method for betting on horse racing, and is the basis of similar products around the world (for example, Tote in the UK or TAB in Australia). The fact that these formats work by combining all bets or entries and then paying dividends based on the bet amounts themselves (with a certain, and quite significant share, always going to the organizers) means that the yield usually offers less value than the actual probability of the selected results if we take into account the odds of bookmakers.

One of the most famous pool wins was the success of Michael Elliott, who won £ 3,001,511 for his £ 2 bet after correctly predicting eight 2-2 draws in 2010. Had a bet like this been placed at Pinnacle, even at the lowest odds currently on offer, it would have returned the player £ 428,717,760 – almost 150 times less, or a difference of £ 425,716,249! From this point of view, Mr. Elliot’s winnings do not look like too much.

Pools remained one of the most popular forms of betting until bookmakers began to open and players were given more convenient ways to place bets. While the company that accepts the bets and the format in which the players will risk their money have changed slightly, the concept of “curating” bets has remained the same.

The emergence of bookmakers

Since the 1960s, bookmakers around the world have opened at an exponential rate. And if initially players preferred to bet on horse racing, dog racing and other similar entertainment, then gradually football began to attract more and more attention of bettors, especially as more and more games were broadcast on television.

Bookmakers have developed their own pool style coupons with curated odds for different combinations of match results. Originally, these coupons had strict conditions that had to be met in order to get a certain chance of winning. Surprisingly, singles were only available on live matches back then.

With less room for thought and fewer options to choose from, this format may have saved players a lot of time, but inadvertently put them at a huge disadvantage. Bookmakers could well create coupons with difficult-to-bet matches, the outcome of which is difficult to predict, and at the same time wrap it all in a beautiful wrapper, combining several games into one bet with attractively high odds – and, of course, a huge margin.

For example, one of these traditional coupons offered 26.00 odds to correctly predict three draws. However, if you choose the lowest odds currently available for three English Premier League draws at Pinnacle, the total odds are 31.34.

If you do the math, it will become obvious that a $ 1,000 bet will bring an additional $ 5,340 profit in the above example, and then the cost of using such a “pooling” coupon for placing bets becomes more understandable.

Moving bids to online and gadgets

While fewer and fewer people visit bookmakers now (meaning their land-based betting points), popular coupons – with their high rewards for minimum bets – are still available online and on mobile.

The traditional win-draw-lose results accumulated in coupons are perhaps the most popular, but soccer bettors also prefer the “both teams to score” market, which we recently posted about. Bookmakers are even more cautious here, and their margins are higher, thereby initially putting players at a disadvantage, but the latter seem to be a little scared.

The temptation to pick four matches in which both teams score at 4.50, six matches at 11.00, or eight matches at 25.00 comes from our innate desire to “make money easily”. What the players are betting on in this case is a high reward at a low cost, without any calculation of the likelihood or, in general, whether the odds offered on this type of coupon are a true reflection of the probability of winning.

As a rule, bookmakers offer odds of about 1.67 on the fact that both teams will score at least one goal in a match and 2.10 on the opposite outcome. Thus, not only do players have to find an advantage in the market and overcome the bookmaker’s high margin of 7.6%, they need to do so, respectively, four, six or eight times, and the margin grows proportionally.

Time to change something?

Time passes, but the basic premise of football pools does not formally change. Many gamblers are chasing big rewards in “curated” bets without considering that the odds they get are much less than the odds of their usual winning on the bet.

Promising that the next draw will have a guaranteed winner by advertising campaigns about a particular event, or simply by providing easy-to-use formats, such bets are a clever and calculated way to fuel players’ hopes for a big win. They provide undeniable adrenaline-pumping value to entertainment betting, but players should still be aware that there is a clear reason why bookmakers will highlight or suggest certain betting options to further complicate an already daunting task.

Smart and experienced gamblers usually avoid coupon bets and any bookmakers that try to promote them. Of course, there is nothing wrong with chasing big winnings, you just need to make sure that the bookmaker does not influence your choice.


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