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Betting against the crowd

One of the most popular betting systems is the “contrarian method”. This means that you will go against what the public believes, whatever it is. The idea behind this method is that the public is often deluded by the media and misled. This means that the more excited they are about one team, the more likely it is that the ‘clever’ app will be on the opposite side.

Public perception vs. bookmakers reality

Betting against the crowd

If the general public was usually on the winning side of the bets, the bookmakers would have a big problem on their hands and would hardly be able to keep up. That is precisely the reason why this betting system makes sense and works well, even over time. Betting sites adjust the betting lines with the aim of getting a similar number of people to bet on each of the two sides. In some cases, the amount offered to bet on one team seems too good to be true.

Back to the subject, if the public is betting on a single team, its odds will fall – it will pay less in case of victory – and who wins is precisely the bookmaker. I say this because high odds do not always mean that a certain team has no chance of winning. This is just the perception created in the betting. And if the underdog wins, the majority of the bettors lose. So why not take the side that the bookmaker is “protecting”?

One example that shows how effective this system is involves following the public’s obsession with betting on favourite teams and on “more of” (you can find out more about over/under betting by clicking here). After all, most people start betting because they already like sports and want to make money from their passion. And what sports fan doesn’t want to bet on great teams and lots of goals?

Bookmakers have this knowledge on their side. They know that no matter what the odds are, many punters will bet blindly on the favourites and the “most of”. Therefore, they calculate the odds in such a way as to pay less for those bets. Consequently, they will pay more for those who bet on the opposite option – and get it right.

Playing against the crowd is profitable

Betting tips

Let’s bring up some data here from the last eight NFL seasons. In games where 75% of the public bet on a single side, they lost in 53-54% of cases. Obviously, that means that betting against resulted in far more wins than losses. Similarly, big underdogs were among the best bets in that same period, having covered 55% of the spreads in games where 75% of the public picked the favourite with a +7 point spread.

No betting system will work forever, as bookmakers tend to adjust to market realities. However, all indications are that playing against the public will continue to be a good strategy over the years. Betting sites will always know which side the public is more in favour of and will continue to calculate odds in such a way as to benefit from this trend. The important thing is that you know how this works and can also benefit from the calculation lines.

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