Thursday, July 30, 2015

Season Handicap Betting 2015/16

It's finally here - the post you have been waiting for.

For the past few years, the season handicap betting blog posts have been getting a lot of traffic. It's mainly people looking around the Internet to find out how they work. If you're here for that very reason, you can follow this link. It'll give you an idea.

What I have been doing for the past few years is share with you a strategy I have devised to pick a team in the handicap markets for the four main leagues in the UK.

To make things a little bit easier for you - and especially for me - I'll paste what I have written in previous posts. There are the two systems. one approach is a Premier League team picker and the other is the 'RFO Method' where I select teams from the three other leagues. I'll start with the latter:

The RFO Method

The first thing I do is go back to a spreadsheet that I have been maintaining where I work out the average points a team gets per position in each league. For example, the team that has finished top of the Championship has done so with an average tally of 93 points recent years. 
I then pick up a copy of the Racing & Football Outlook on the Tuesday before the leagues kick-off and look at the leagues coverage. The newspaper predicts how each club will finish. I rank the teams in the order the RFO projects making sure to add both the average points and the handicap points. They are then ranked in order (highest to lowest) to get a projected handicap table.

Firstly, it's worth pointing out that the Racing & Football Outlook Leagues special is out a week earlier in 2015. If you want a copy, you have to purchase it before Monday as next week's issue (out August 4th) will contain the Premier League supplement.

Secondly, I have decided to make a change in regard to the Premier League method.

The New Premier League Method For 2015

Usually, I would bet blindly on the team that gained promotion to the Premier League by finishing second in the Championship. This method hasn't been great lately, so I'm trying a new approach for this season. 
The method I have now adopted is to put every team in the order the bookmakers have them on the 'Outright' winner markets. I then add the 'average position point' to each team. The handicap points are then put on top. Once this is done, I sort the field so we have the teams' predicted finishing points and season handicap points added together and ranked from high to low.

This Year's Season Handicap Projections

In the Premier League, the top four are:

1) Chelsea 88pts (0 handicap)
2) Stoke 86pts (+32)
3) Man City 85pts (+3)
4) Southampton 84pts (+26)

Chelsea do not get a head-start on the other selections, so I am reluctant to bet on them. Don't forget, I place each-way bets on these teams, so as long as the team I select is in the top four of the bookmaker's handicap table at the end of the season, the bet will pay out.

Stoke has been given thirty-two points. That's good enough for me!

The Championship's top four:

1) Middlesbrough 92pts (0)
2) Derby 86pts (0)
3) Hull 86pts (4)
4) Burnley 85pts (7)

The League One top four:

1) Sheffield Utd 94pts (0)
2) Wigan 90pts (3)
3) Millwall 88pts (6)
4) Barnsley 88pts (8)

As you can see, the system has picked Chelsea, Southampton and Sheffield United to win. All of these teams start with zero in their respective leagues. This is the first time I can recall that the favourites appear in three of the four season handicap projections. I have taken Sheffield Utd, but think it would be wise to take the four points with Hull City.

League Two:

1) Luton 92pts (4)
2) Cambridge 90pts (8)
3) Exeter 90pts (19)
4) Notts County 86pts (10)

I am going to take Luton. 

My Bets

1) Stoke +32
2) Hull +4
3) Sheffield Utd 0
4) Luton +4

I have to admit, I am not as confident as I usually get when placing these bets at the start of the year.

I have placed my bet with Bet365. The company is very good when it comes to bets like this. If you aren't a Bet365 Customer, you can join them via this special link.

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