Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Trading the outrights in-play: Do or Don't?

With another weekend of comebacks and collapses from the Premier League's so called 'elite', I stumbled across an interesting thought when watching the outright markets: is it wise to place bets on the outright markets when matches are in-play? As regular readers will know, the outright markets are where I have been focusing a lot of my attention this season, and this thought appeared in my mind when I looked at the odds in-play. Over the weekend both United and City went behind, and the winners market yo-yo'd accordingly. With United starting at 2.15 to win the title, they drifted to around 2.6 after slipping two goals behind, before Chicharito completed the comeback and they ended the match hovering between 2 and 2.1 for the title. Similarly, City started Sunday around 3.3, before drifting massively to 4.5 whilst being held by Spurs, and finally completed their comeback to return to the 3.2-3 mark. 

Man United Graph

Man City Graph

This got me thinking about if it is worth getting involved in-play in order to take an over-reactionary price in the market. If we have learned anything over the last decade or so it is that United, and now City, are masters of the comeback and rarely slip to unusual defeats. United in particular have been particularly poor at the back this season, but have so far had enough firepower to keep coming from behind time and time again. The benefit of taking a high price in-play and banking on a comeback is that, should the team fail to come back in that particular match, the trade is not lost and it can continue for the duration of the season. But although the price may seem attractive at the time, there is still scope to say that more often than not you will end up with egg on your face.

The problem with taking the prices in-play is that the prices are disfigured, and although that could work in your favour at times, it is more likely to confuse you in the long run. The length of a match is far too short a time to be making any big or rash decisions. I don't believe anyone should make huge decisions based on a team's performance in one match, or even one half of a match, as things can change very quickly in football. Sure, most people trade the in-play match markets throughout the game, but the outright markets require a lot more attention. For starters, the amount wagered would need to be large to take any decent size profit from the trade, and such a quantity would be something I would be uncomfortable with on an impromptu bet. Another reason to hold back and let the match unfold, is that you will probably get a higher price if the result stays the same, than you would in-play. The odds on City to win the title are going to be larger after they have LOST to Spurs, rather than whilst they are LOSING and might possibly lose in the end. 

Lastly, and most crucially in my opinion, is why not just trade the match odds market if you think a comeback is on? They have the potential to be so much more lucrative and you need not risk such large sums either. Had you put £100 on United to win the title at 2.6 when they were 2-0 down to Villa, you could now take a £25 profit on all scenarios. If you put £100 on United to beat Villa at top in-play price 11.5, well, you do the maths. And while you could argue £100 is a lot to stake on the last 40 minutes of a football match, you would only needed to have staked around £2.50 to take a £25 profit. 

This weekend was another positive one for me as I made another small chunk of profit, and my outright trades continued to progress. The results at the Emirates and Stamford Bridge were almost perfect for me, it is just a shame that Spurs couldn't hold on that tiny bit longer. It's unlikely I will be trading the internationals and I am bored already of Wilfried Zaha, who has suddenly become the most sought after player on the planet. I would be interested to hear your thoughts on this blog topic, particularly from anyone who does trade the markets in-play. There must be someone out there, because otherwise there wouldn't be movements! 

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