The notion of Value Bet is essential in sports betting. Understanding it is a big step towards success in your predictions and especially to increase your expectation of winning in the long term.
The notion of value bet is surely the most important concept in the field of sports betting. However, we often see this term used in a variety of ways…
What is a value bet?
To put it simply, it is considering that the odds proposed by your bookmaker are higher than they should be. As the odds are the translation of a probability that the event will happen, in this case, the bookmaker underestimates the probability that the event will happen.
The notion of value bet is purely subjective. It is up to each of you to estimate the probability of an event happening.
Sometimes it is quite simple when bookmakers make mistakes in the odds. But in most cases, you will have to develop and refine your own analysis to find value bets.
To illustrate my point
- Arsenal 4.60 / Tie 4.30 / Manchester City 1.70
- Bettor A considers Arsenal’s win to be value.
- Bettor B considers City’s win to be value.
- Who is right? Who is wrong? Where is the value?
In fact, no one is really right and no one is wrong because value is the comparison of your estimate of the value of an odds with the one proposed by the bookmaker. And this can differ from person to person as it is purely subjective.
How do you define what is value?
As we explained above: The value bet is purely subjective. This means that your opinion will differ from another.
To illustrate my point, here are the odds of a match at the opening of the market:
- Arsenal Odds 4.60 / Draw Odds 4.30 / Manchester City Odds 1.70
- Bettor A considers Arsenal’s win a value bet.
- Bettor B considers City’s victory a value bet.
Who is right? Who is wrong? Where is the value bet?
Bettor A considers that Arsenal’s odds should have been around 4.10 instead of 4.60. His estimate places Arsenal as a value bet!
Bettor B considers that the City odds should have been 1.45 instead of 1.70. His estimate places Manchester City as a Value Bet!
You have to understand one thing. A value bet is not necessarily a value bet for your neighbour. And this is where the difference between a good bettor and a bad bettor is made. Looking for and finding value in your sports betting makes all the difference in the long run.
Some bettors will play events that represent no value and others will always try to figure out how to beat the bookmaker’s estimated odds.
In fact, at this point, no one is really right and no one is really wrong because value is the comparison of your estimate of the value of an odds with the one offered by the bookmaker.
Only the market will decide between the two analyses. And this will be reflected in the evolution of the odds.
Odds And Value Bet Intrinsically Linked
The evolution of the odds: Dropping Odds, Closing Odds
As you know, odds fluctuate. And this will determine if you have made a value bet or not. What about Bettor A and Bettor B in this situation?
If the Arsenal odds were to fall and the closing odds were 4.10, then punter A was right to take the Arsenal odds at 4.60. There was indeed a value bet on Arsenal.
If City’s odds were to fall and the final closing odds were 1.45, then punter B was right to take the Manchester City odds at 1.70. There was indeed value in those odds.
So it all depends on your analysis and the evolution of the market. The market can be right or it can be wrong. The aim is to understand the market and to take the best value odds.
The Value Bet is inseparable from the probability of a quote
First of all, you need to understand that an odds represents the probability estimated by your bookmaker that an event will occur. This is the basis.
We have provided a probability calculator:
- Evaluating the probability of an odds on your bookmaker.
- You will not be able to assess the possibility of a value bet if you do not understand the principle of probability.
- The calculation of the probability of an odds is simple: % probability of the book = (100 / odds).
- Arsenal’s win at 4.60 represents a 21.74% probability of happening (100/4.60) = 21.74%.
- A draw at 4.30 has a 23.26% chance of happening (100/4.30) = 23.26%.
- City’s victory has a 58.82% chance of happening (100/1.70) = 58.82%.
Yes, you’re not dreaming, that’s just over 104%. There is a little more than 4% extra which is simply the bookmaker’s margin.
Once you understand this, you can start making your own estimates by trying to beat the bookmaker.
Start looking for Value Bets today
Take a random match from your online betting site’s offering and determine the probability of an event occurring.
To do this, you will need to do a thorough analysis of the match.