Best odds!

   Soccer Gambling Articles

Soccer Betting: Profit from Home Field Advantage

(Originally posted 20 February 2004)

In soccer, more than any other sport, home field advantage is hugely important. Teams can go an entire season unbeaten at home, while carrying a mediocre record on the road. A quick glance at the standings in the major European leagues makes this clear:

» Real Madrid: 11-1-0 at home / 5-4-3 on the road
» Deportivo: 10-1-2 at home / 5-3-3 on the road
» Newcastle: 7-3-3 at home / 2-8-2 on the road
» Juventus: 9-1-1 at home / 5-3-2 on the road

What’s going on here? Unlike in North American sports, soccer teams don’t travel thousands of miles on road trips, zigzagging a continent and crossing four time zones. In the European leagues, the longest trip is usually a couple of hours by bus. So why the huge discrepancy then?

To begin with, soccer fans are not just fans, they’re fanatics. Soccer is life. And it’s the only game in town. No other sport even comes close in popularity. Soccer fans are the epitome of the word ‘die-hard’, more so even - dare I say it - than NFL fans. It’s a war mentality where regional rivalries and hatreds run deep. No American sport locks visiting fans in their own section of the stadium, sealed in a cage to protect them from flying bottles and other missiles hurled at them by the home fans. It’s unheard of for baseball fans to be chased and beaten for supporting the wrong team. Not so in soccer.

Since home fans are so crazy about their teams, home teams have a much bigger advantage. Crowds are deafeningly noisy, incredibly rowdy and they sing throughout the game. When the home team is losing they look to the crowd for motivation and support. When they’re winning, fan support can make a home team unstoppable.

Another factor is ‘away disadvantage.’ Home crowds are very intimidating to road teams. Players perceive it to be much more difficult to play on the road, and their nervousness often results in mistakes and bad decisions. Teams that haven’t won for years in a certain stadium will feel it’s impossible to win there. These types of records hang like an albatross around their necks. So it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy: through pessimism and fatalism the road team becomes convinced they will lose, and they aren’t surprised when they do.

That’s all fine and interesting, you might say, but how can we profit from this? For the most part, the oddsmakers factor home field advantage into their lines. But the average bettor certainly doesn’t, especially when a premier team is playing on the road. The result is skewed lines, often with value in the home underdog. Dismal away teams with a winless road record often have a respectable record at home. For example, Wolves (3:2) represent good value at home against Fulham (8:5) this weekend. Their away record is 4-5-3, which includes wins against Manchester United and Liverpool. Wolves get a huge boost from their home crowd, who are among the most inspiring fans of any team in the league.

Other Articles About Soccer Betting:

» Soccer Wagering: Point Spread or Money Line?
» UEFA Champions League Prediction: Group Stage
» World Cup Qualifiers 2006: European Zone
» Carling Cup Prediction: Second Round Preview
» Italian Soccer Prediction: Serie A Preview 2004/2005
» French Soccer Prediction: Singing Les Bleus
» Spanish Soccer Prediction: Primera Liga Preview 2004
» German Soccer Prediction: Bundesliga Preview 2004
» English Premier League Prediction 2004/2005
» Olympics Soccer: Redemption Time
» Copa America Prediction: Samba or Last Tango in Peru?
» Asian Cup Prediction: Here We Go Again
» Copa America Betting: At the Copa...
» Betting Euro 2004: The Final Four
» Euro 2004 Gambling: Propaholics and Rooney-Mania
» Euro 2004 Predictions: Handicapping Secrets Revealed
» Euro 2004 Tips: Props - Part 1
» Euro 2004 Bets: Props - Part 2
» International Friendlies: How to Cash In
» Road Dogs and Big Profits: How to Find Both
» Uefa Champions League Betting Tips: The Final Four
» Man Utd v Arsenal Prediction: Clash of the Titans
» Premiership Predictions: EPL Roundup
» UK Bookmakers: Where the Action Is
» Legal Betting: A Gambler's Paradise
» Cup Competitions: Where the Money is
» Profit from Home Field Advantage

Home | Free Picks | Results | Articles | FAQ | Links | Contact | Live Scores | Odds | Matchups | Stats | Subscribe

2004 (c) Copyright Sports Investments Ltd. All rights reserved. Read Legal Policy and Privacy Policy