A Value Bet is a value bet, in which the value assigned is higher than the real probability that the event on which it is based will happen, due to an erroneous estimate by the bookmaker, who has failed to calculate the odds.
How are Value Bets calculated?
It is actually very difficult to calculate exactly whether a bet is a value bet or not. However, what we can do accurately is to calculate the odds that the bookmaker estimates and compare them with the odds that we have estimated.
If our percentage is lower than the bookmaker’s, then we have what is known as a Value Bet.
Let’s look at an example of a football match, for example, Zamora vs Moraleja del Vino.
Zamora win: $1.85 / 54.05%.
Moraleja del Vino win: $1.97 / 50.76 %.
To calculate the probability based on the odds we have followed this formula: [Probability = 1/odds * 100].
If in this case the probability of Zamora’s victory in our analysis was 50%, then we would be looking at a Value Bet, as the bookmaker would be paying us more than what we really consider the win to be worth.
Strategies to find Value Bets
There are 2 methods to learn how to find Value Bets:
This method is the one explained in the previous section, that is, first we must calculate the probability offered by the bookmaker for a certain event based on the odds provided and then we must calculate our own percentage based on the statistical data that we have previously selected and that we believe gives us a true picture of the possible success of that event.
Not everyone is willing or has the time to invest in a complete statistical analysis of a given match in order to extract the real probability of a given event (win, draw or loss). In this case, experience as a football expert can provide us with the necessary knowledge to detect Value Bets, for example, if a team is offered a certain odds but we know that when they face such a team their chances of winning are multiplied, we are actually implicitly stating that they have more chances of winning than what the bookmaker gives them and, therefore, we are dealing with what is known as a Value Bet.
Example of a Value Bet
As an example of a Value Bet we can take the above data:
- Zamora win: 54.05%.
- Moraleja del Vino win: 50.76%.
Our calculated probability is 52% for the victory of Zamora. Therefore, a Zamora win would be a value bet, as the bookmaker would be setting a higher success rate for that outcome than the actual one, which is what we are supposed to have calculated.
Difference between Value Bet vs. Surebets
Value bets are, in practice, the opposite of what is known as a Surebet. That is, while a Value Bet is a bet with a certain risk, a Surebet is a fairly likely bet, one in which the risk is considered to be much lower.
In short, a Value Bet would be betting on the smaller team playing away, while a Surebet would be betting on the bigger team playing at home, i.e. one that has a much better chance of winning the match.