Unlike get-rich-quick schemes such as the lottery, sports betting provides people with the opportunity to control their investment. People’s decisions, not a random draw, determine winning or losing.
Naturally, people gravitate to what is mainstream and at the forefront, thus it’s no surprise that betting on football is amongst the more popular forms of sports betting.
Given the sport’s global reach and widespread media coverage, not to mention the huge range of betting options offered for each game and competition, punters simply can’t get enough of it.
But not all football competitions should be treated the same by bettors; each has its own particularities that lead to unique patterns of play and outcomes.
The English Premier League, the world’s most popular domestic football competition, is no exception.
Here, we guide you through some of the specifics of betting on the English Premier League and offer up some strategies that can help you make it one of the most profitable competitions you bet on.
Availability of Statistics
The English Premier League is a perfect example of a popular league with various avenues available for securing matchday information along with team and player statistics for free.
The league receives more media coverage than any other, largely by account of a multi-billion-pound television rights agreement that sees it broadcast into more living rooms and pubs than any other league in the world.
This is just one way of sourcing your statistics, but there should be others.
The English Premier League’s official website is another good resource for league-specific coverage and also includes the popular Fantasy Premier League game, played by millions worldwide, which offers even more refined information that can be applied to a betting strategy.
There are a host of other websites that detail the key statistics and fixtures that you should be aware of, so look far and wide. It’s much easier to find statistics for Premier League betting tips than it is when looking for lower league betting tips.
Once you have gathered the information, the next step is to learn how to apply it to the specifics of the league itself.
Applying the Data
Goals for, goals against, wins, losses, defeats, shots on goal, corners… the list of statistics goes on. And of the face of it, it’s the same old list that can be created for any football league.
But how do you apply these statistics specifically to the English Premier League?
Your first port of call is to get to know the strengths and weaknesses of all the teams, very well.
Some teams will be prolific in front of goal, while others will rely on a stingy defence, opening up anything from goal line betting options to which player will score.
Leicester City’s stunning title run in the 2015/16 season was built on solid defence, and the likes of Tottenham and Manchester United were also renowned for keeping clean sheets. Naturally, this often translated to them being involved in low-scoring affairs.
It may take some time into the season to accumulate the relevant data, but don’t hesitate to reference previous seasons, as many teams have utilised trademark style under a certain manager for years.
This competition also has a unique schedule that we discuss in detail in the aforementioned betting on football post.
To summarise from that post, English Premier League sides endure a packed fixture list, particularly over the Christmas and New Year period, that brings plenty of value bets to the table.
Also, be wary of the managerial merry-go-round that can take place in the English Premier League. The stakes are high in the world’s richest football competitions, and managers are often cast aside when teams underperform.
From a betting perspective, this can be viewed as opportunity. A common occurrence is for a struggling team facing relegation to have a change of manager during the season and turn their fortunes around.
All of sudden, lower-table sides start picking up draws or causing upsets, all at very attractive odds.
Sunderland were the case in point in 2015/16 when they escaped relegation under Sam Allardyce, but there are countless other examples.
While a change of manager doesn’t always work, when it does it can leave the bettor with the opportunity to make valuable bets on a team’s revival.
Why the Premier League over Cup Competitions?
In short, the form lines stack up more consistently in the English Premier League than they do in cup competitions.
The FA Cup, despite its rich history, is often a distraction for the top teams, who will field weaker sides during the earlier rounds, and the same is even more true of the League Cup.
The same applies for English Premier League teams taking place in the Europa League; they simply don’t take the competition as seriously as they do the league.
Granted, the above examples present an opportunity to back the underdog at good value, particularly in the case of the FA Cup where lower-league teams can make audacious runs into the later stage of the competition.
The Champions League, on the other hand, is at the forefront of any English Premier League team’s aims for the season, yet picking the correct outcomes here can be difficult given the amount of quality sides that take part in the competition.
It’s the domestic league where a team’s form line can be best gauged. Put simply, there is so much more to play for.
Certain teams are fighting for survival, others want to qualify for European competitions and the best fight it out for top honours.
With each match having plenty riding on it, you can feel assured that teams go into them seeking the best result possible. The same can’t be said of the cup competitions that can clog the fixture list.
That should give the bettor confidence that the research on the English Premier League will be backed up by the performances on the pitch.
Whilst the Premier League does have upsets on a regular basis, it’s typically much more predictable to bet on than the likes of the MLS.
The immense popularity of English Premier League betting means that punters can also take advantage of arbitrage bets. These are otherwise known as miraclebets, surebets, or arbs.
Usually, betting on all outcomes at the odds offered by the same bookmaker is almost surely going to end up as a loss.
Arbitrage bets, on the other hand, are about comparing the odds, for the same event, across different bookmakers and choosing the best odds for each outcome.
Given the English Premier League’s popularity, there are plenty of odds to access and compare for each fixture.
And this means it is possible to find a spread of contrasting odds that eradicate the chances of loss and offer up excellent returns. That’s if you do your research effectively, of course.
Before you latch onto this betting strategy, It is important to remember that arbitrage does require stakes to have perfect weightage on all outcomes in such a way that the punter does not face a loss.
There are risks associated with arbing though, such as find out what being gubbed means.
When you have found your edge in the market, it’s often worth looking at trying to accumulate larger winnings from smaller stakes.
We cover this in great detail in our guide to betting challenges.