Finding Value Down The League Pyramid

International football takes over this weekend, which I always find very frustrating as it means a blank weekend from any top level betting action. Still it provides an opportunity to look at some lower league football action, which is an area ripe for exploring as the bookmakers are certainly vulnerable in this area.

Lazy Bookmakers

There is considerable evidence to suggest that the further down the league pyramid you go in England, the lazier the bookmakers are when it comes to pricing up markets.

Take for example this table, which formed part of an article from Mat Hare that we published back in April, which looked at the differences in the Under/Over 2.5 goals markets across Europe.

It shows the range between the lowest and highest price for both the Over and Under markets. What is noticeable is that as we go down the leagues in England the range of odds drops from 0.97 and 1.07 in the Premiership down to 0.61 and 0.59 in League 2.

This suggests that there is little variation in the League Two prices implying that the bookmakers tend to apply a more standardised pricing model to the under/over markets for that division. It seems the bookies start with a set of odds for each game and apply a relatively small adjustment for teams in League Two compared with other divisions such as the Primera Liga. It also appears to be a pattern for the Championship and League One with a noticeable lower range difference – indicating again that less analysis and thought goes into this area!

One explanation for this is that bookmakers experience a lower turnover on markets for the lower divisions so if their prices are slightly out of line, they won’t experience the same punishment as they would for a Premiership match.

Knowing this is all well and good but how do we now act upon this information? I must admit that my own League 2 knowledge isn’t the most in-depth, but thankfully there is help at hand to try and discover some betting angles.

Uncovering Lower League Betting Angles

One way to uncover new betting angles in leagues you may not be familiar with is by using software such as Form Lab Pro, which we review in the current issue of SBC.

Form Lab Pro is a football stats database program where you can check the profitability of certain trends at the click of a button. It’s a useful piece of kit and if you want to find out more, I do suggest you pick up SBC 52. For now though let me illustrate a few trends I picked out, which may give you an edge down the league pyramid!

Accrington Stanley @ Home

Accrington Stanley’s home record against top half teams sees over 2.5 goals 53% of the time. Thus anything over 1.88 could be value. They face 8th placed Wycombe at home this weekend with a best priced 2.2 on over 2.5 goals. Worth a small bet?

Rotherham Away

Rotherham United’s away record against top half teams sees under 2.5 goals 63% of the time. Thus anything over 1.60 could be value and you can get 1.8 on under 2.5 goals on Rotherham against 2nd placed Shrewsbury this weekend.

The Lower the League – the Greater the Value

These are just 2 quick examples I found whilst examining this weekend’s games, and there are no doubt many more available once you sit down and begin to pull apart these leagues.

Relatively untapped leagues can be a goldmine for the right punter and its noticeable that quite a few of our recommended football tipsters here at SBC utilise them. Leagues such as Scottish Division 3 or the Conference North might not have the same lustre as betting in the Premier League but then who cares if it makes you money!

Be sure as well to check out some of the many football system articles we have available to all SBC members, many of which you can find at our Betting & Strategy Guides members section. (Please note you do need an active SBC membership to access this).