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There’s an old saying in casino betting that says; “The house always wins”. And you can just as easily say that about sports bookmakers. After all, they’ve been doing this a long time and they make money from you losing money. But still we all harbour those dreams of finally being able to say that we beat the bookies! So; can it be done? Can we beat the bookies?
We’re going to look at the ways you can try to beat the bookies, using common sense, betting strategies, systems, tips, and tricks. We’re also going to have to burst a few bubbles along the way!
We have to be absolutely, brutally honest with you, the chances of you making big, long-term profits from sports betting are extremely low. It doesn’t matter whether you’re trying to beat the bookies at football, tennis, horse racing and other popular sports or something as niche as handball or ski jumping, the bookie makes the bets with a view to winning!
After all, if it were that easy to make money from betting, we’d all become professional gamblers and, within a year, all the bookies would be out of business due to us winning all the time!
However, there are strategies you can put in place to make both short-term wins and long-term success more likely. But always be sure to remember that, no matter how good your strategies are, there’s always that element of chance, which means there are never any guarantees in gambling!
Most important of all, remember to always stick to the most important rules of all: Never bet more than you can afford to lose and always remember it’s meant to be fun – if and when it stops being fun, stop betting.
Various studies have taken place over the years, looking for the perfect betting strategy and, unfortunately, there’s not a single one of them that can guarantee you a win. So, if you see something online that tells you about this system that just can’t fail, or wants to sell you a beat the bookies app that will always deliver a winner, just don’t believe the hype!
Over the years, many different people have tried, and failed, to come up with the perfect beat the bookies system. Mathematicians have spent years perfecting a model to hunt down best value bets and predict the games that will have the most favourable outcome. And, inevitably, they find that the system pays out for a while. But then something unexpected happens and it all goes wrong.
For example, New Scientist published a story in 2017 telling of a team of mathematicians who studied 10 years worth of odds on half a million football matches across 30+ bookmakers. They spent months developing systems to work out the best bets and their simulations gave them a decent return of 3.5%. And, after five months of putting about $1,500 a week on games, they’d made a profit of $957.50, about 8.5% return. But that’s less than $1,000 for months of solid work, less than minimum wage. And then the bookmaker restricted their betting anyway to completely derail the whole thing.
And that’s pretty much the story of every system and strategy going. Short-term gains eventually fail, or the effort is simply not worth the reward.
In fact, the best advice we can give you, when it comes to how to beat the bookies, is to follow the few simple rules that the professional gamblers follow:
So, we’ve already given you the pro gamblers top tips for staying ahead of the bookies. But, there’s some very specific tips and tricks we want to give you to get you started.
This is the boring tip. This is the tip that actually involves you putting in the work. You need to know the market, the sport, inside out. We’ve all seen the older punters studying the horses, following the form, which is how to beat the bookies horse racing style. But it applies to any and all sports. You need to be aware of all of the factors that will affect the outcome of any match or game and know how to use it to your advantage to get the best winning result. If you’re new to the betting world, then you might want to read up on some guides; why not start with our rollover explained guide?
Don’t always stick to either the most popular sports or the most obvious markets. You might find that you can do far better on something like Volleyball, as long as you know the sport after some research, than a common sport such as football. There are times the bookies themselves aren’t quite as knowledgeable with these niche sports and you can find more value bets there. Similarly, instead of the obvious match betting on the straight result, your incredible knowledge can be put to great use by going for niche markets; look at the team and make a smart bet on first goalscorer, for example.
There are hundreds, thousands of websites and other sources of betting tips out there. Want to learn how to beat the bookies at football? There’s plenty of sites with tips and beat the bookie football predictions out there for you. Want to find beat the bookies horse racing tips? Just search. But, you need to know which of these beat the bookies tips sites are worth your time and effort and which aren’t. An example to look at are the betting tips on betting.co.uk. Again, you’re going to have to do a bit of work here. Find one of the many beat the bookies forums or beat the bookies Twitter feeds to find out which ones are the ones you need to follow. And then be sure to treat all the tips carefully – again, go back to our top tip and do the research, get the knowledge to check the tips are good. Also – always make a note of the maximum bookies pay out in cash.
One of the very tempting ways to gamble is by building up an accumulator at phenomenal odds. We’ve all heard of the punters who backed 10+ selections at £10 and ended up with hundreds of thousands in winnings when they all came off. These beat the bookies accumulators make huge headlines. They’re also incredibly rare. What you don’t hear about all that often are the hundreds and thousands of accumulators that don’t come off, when one or more of the selections crashes and burns, ruining the accumulator.
Instead, keep it simple. The fewer selections you make, the more chance of winning. If you have to run accumulators, go for a couple or three selections, well chosen, with a good chance of winning. Better yet, keep it single and make smart single bets instead! Payout might not be incredible, but you’re doing this for the cumulative gain.
This is a really complicated strategy to try, and not one you should even think of until you really know what you’re doing. We could write whole articles on matched betting (in fact, we have!) but, basically, it works like this: You use a combination of regular bookmakers and betting exchanges (such as Betfair or Smarkets) along with free bet and bonus offers to make bets on both results of a match, backing one and laying the other to ensure that no matter the outcome, you come out a winner. As with all the betting strategies, there’s plenty of help online with no risk matched betting, with dedicated sites that bring you all the best offers and show you how to do it.
How do you beat the bookies? Well, it’s all stacked against you, and you probably shouldn’t even try, in the long term at least. But, if you stick to the tips and tricks to beat the bookies we’ve shown you here, you should at least have a better chance at beating them sometimes!