Diary Of A Football Trader – Issue 6
Diary Of A Pro Football Trader – Issue 6
Welcome to the latest edition of “Diary Of A Pro Trader”, you can read all the past Issues here.
At his request, we have to keep is identity a secret, but here is what we can tell you about our new Pro Trader
ProTrader started his career and fascination with the financial markets as an Index Analyst at FTSE. He has since consulted for 15 years for some of the top Financial Institutions and Investment Banks in the world, where he specialized in financial instruments, pricing data, trading platforms and risk management solutions. He first started trading sports markets in early 2000, after the introduction and discovery of Betfair. He now trades the financial markets whilst working on entrepreneurial ventures with a focus on sports trading apps and e-commerce. He lives with his wife and young daughter between their homes of London, Sardinia, Odessa and Sochi. In his spare time, he is writing a book, enjoys outdoor pursuits with his family, learning Russian and of course, trading football markets.
Each week, ProTrader will be sharing his trading exploits and insights from his previous weeks trading and, if we're lucky, from time to time he'll also be giving a few pointers on upcoming trades that he'll be targeting.
This is something new for us but we are sure you are going to enjoy and benefit from ProTrader's insights.
So please do show your love and appreciation in the comments (plus any questions and suggestions), so that both Football Advisor and ProTrader know this is something you want to keep seeing in the future.
Without further ado, I'll hand over to Pro Trader.
Saturday, 12th September, 2020
It’s the start of the English Premier League today, with four matches being played at staggered times throughout the day. However, all matches are still being played behind closed doors with fans not allowed to enter the stadium due to the coronavirus. This creates a weird, almost apocalyptic atmosphere, and I can imagine it must have an effect on the players, and thus the outcome of games. The start of the new season is always difficult to navigate whether betting or trading, because you really don’t how teams will turn out. This is especially true, because two of the three games I’m targeting include newly promoted sides. I realise I have said this a lot recently, due to the recent European Cup competitions and UEFA National League games, but it is best to proceed with caution. Maybe watch the first 10–15 minutes first before committing yourself to something that you may later regret. #JustSayin’.
Summary of Market Trading
Fulham v Arsenal
Under / Over 2.5 Goals
Shortly after kick-off, I took a lay position on unders at 1.9 for £59. This was a starting position, to basically just have ‘skin in the game’. I intended to then increase this incrementally as the price dropped. A few minutes later I increase my position, laying at 1.8. This was just before Arsenal scored on the 8th minute. After that, I let the positions sit and rest, and when Arsenal scored a third in the 57th minute, this market was finished, producing £69 profit.
Crystal Palace v Southampton
Under / Over 2.5 Goals
From my analysis it would appear that this would be a low-scoring game. I take a back position on unders at 1.77 for £60. Later in to the game I take a lay position on unders at 1.54 for £25. However, with an early goal (13th minute), and not feeling comfortable with having this trade open, I close it for a small profit.
Now at this stage, you may ask why I change so rapidly from backing to laying these market outcomes, which is essentially the same thing (backing unders, laying overs). The reason is, from my time trading tennis matches, it is always advisable to switch to the market with the lowest odds, and then back and lay accordingly. The general rule in trading on Betfair is to work on the outcome where the price is less than 2.0 (or the lowest price). It is where you will find the most liquidity in the market, get the best prices and be able to exit the trade easier when you want to.
When there is a day of no favorable football matches to trade, I will write about how to approach and trade tennis matches, which are generally more difficult than football matches, and require totally different methods and additional software, but can also be extremely profitable with the right approach.
I layed ‘Yes’ at the beginning of the match at 2.0 for £50. Again, like the above trade the early goal was detrimental to this and I didn’t feel comfortable leaving it open, thinking that Southampton would equalize. So again I closed this trade for a small £7 profit rather than take further risk.
Liverpool v Leeds
Now, as I have stated before, if the overall outcome you are interested in is not priced favorably, then this market can offer more value, but due to lower liquidity and general interest, it is less tradeable.
I was keen on backing Liverpool, but the price was not of interest at the available 1.3. I was expecting goals, and Liverpool to get off to a fast start, so instead I went to this market, where a back price of 1.9 was available, and so I took a back position for £60.
Every time Liverpool scored and the position was showing profit, Leeds managed to score an equalizer. This was incredibly frustrating for this sort of trade, and I was glad when I eventually closed it for a £57 profit.
During one of the moments when Liverpool were pegged back again by Leeds, their price rose to 1.97, which I backed for £50. 16 minutes later, when they took control again, I closed this position for £42 profit. This is a classic swing-style trade where you go against how the market is behaving and are able to profit and exit quickly.
After witnessing the goals flowing in this game, I believed that Liverpool would score more than 3, and so I back ‘any other home win’ at a fairly low price of 2.33 for £30. I then closed this trade just before they scored their 4th goal to produce a £35 profit.
It’s always tricky on the first day of the season to see how teams turn out. I was confident in the Arsenal game because they have played more recently; winning the FA Cup and Community Shield, against two top sides. The other games were more unpredictable, and this can be seen for instance with Leeds (a newly promoted side) scoring 3 goals at Anfield! Quite unbelievable. I could have stuck with my predictions on Crystal Palace v Southampton, but the early single goal was not beneficial when you have open positions opposing more goals. I am happy with taking a more cautious approach with these opening games, and will probably continue this way tomorrow. Overall, these three matches banked £213 profit.
Sunday, 13th September, 2020
There’s more Premier League games on today:
- West Bromwich Albion v Leicester City
- Tottenham v Everton
However, the match I have selected is the former, since following my analysis it is quite clear that Leicester should win this game and I expect over 2.5 goals. The Tottenham v Everton game is very hard to judge and really anything could happen (or not happen) in this fixture.
There’s also a French Ligue 1 game that is of interest. Now this a league that I haven’t followed seriously until recently, but now perversely I am looking at their fixture lists. The match today is:
- PSG v Marseille
Summary of Market Trading
West Brom v Leicester
I was expecting a Leicester win, so in the early hours of the morning I took a back position at 2.04 for £100. 36 minutes in to the first half, their odds have risen to 2.6, so I increase my position.
Leicester scored in the 56th, then followed up with second on 74 minutes. I then closed the trades for £71 profit.
Under / Over 2.5 Goals
I dabbled in this market by laying unders, but closed it (luckily) for just under £10 profit.
PSG v Marseille
I recently traded the Lens v PSG match, where the score ended 1-0. Therefore, I was surprised to see that the PSG starting price was 1.47 here, considering they’ve had players missing from their squad due to coronavirus. I looked at the Betfair chart for the back price of PSG during the day, and it had been fluctuating quite wildly; not normal for a big team in a major European league. As time drew nearer to kick-off, it really dropped. I believe this was due to the Neymar effect. It wasn’t certain if he would be featuring, but once confirmed the price on PSG dropped substantially.
I decided the strategic positon here was to lay PSG, so I took a lay position on them at 1.47 for £125. As the match progressed, I increased this position at 1.33 for £40.
When Lens scored in the 31st minute, I quickly closed these positions for a £57 profit. However, if left to run this could have amounted to £165. But in these circumstances, it is very possible that PSG would quickly equalize, and so this decision was made.
Before kick-off, I was expecting ‘BTTS – yes’ and took a position accordingly. When Lens scored first, this was very good for this position, since the market believed that PSG would then score and the price moved favorably. However, I closed this position for a £45 profit, even when both teams did not score in this match.
Leicester are a good side, and I expected them to win the game against a newly promoted team. I was surprised that people in the market were backing PSG at such a low price (1.3). It was clear they were a semi-weakened side, and Marseille have many quality players, such as Dimitri Payet. Anyway, £102 profit was banked for this match, and £183 profit from the day.
Monday, 14th September, 2020
There’s another Premier League game that I’m interested in today, namely:
- Brighton & Hove Albion v Chelsea
Summary of Market Trading
Brighton v Chelsea
I was anticipating a Chelsea win, so earlier in the day, I took a £100 back position on them at 1.64. Before kick-off, I was slighting surprised that their price hadn’t moved much. However, this is their opening game of the season, with some new players, and the price is already fairly low for a side playing away.
After Chelsea scored in the 23rd minute and expecting more goals to follow (which they did), this position was left open to run to the end and maximize profits. £64 was then banked at the final whistle.
Under / Over 2.5 Goals
I traded this market briefly by laying overs, but closed it after Chelsea scored for a 19 profit.
A fairly dull trading game by many accounts. The match odds position was taken much earlier in the day and simply left to run, the unders market was closed, fearing more goals. But these are early games with re-arranged teams, so it’s best to take a cautious view at this stage. Anyway, £83 profit was banked on this match covering two markets.
Tuesday, 15th September, 2020
There’s quite a few English League Cup games on today, but I really don’t want to delve in to this competition at this stage. It really is a lottery because you don’t know how seriously teams will take it and what the outcome could be. At this stage, I feel it is best to avoid these games if you care about your bank.
Instead I target a French Ligue 1 match:
- Montpellier v Lyon
I have run some high-level analysis on this game, and believe the best markets to approach are:
- BTTS –Yes
- Over 2.5 Goals
I then look at further analysis and recommendations on the likely outcome of this match, with a focus on BTTS and Over 2.5 Goals markets.
With positive percentages on these markets also showing, I then proceed to take positions to exploit these markets and the prices available.
Summary of Market Trading
Montpellier v Lyon
I layed ‘BTTS – No’ for £100 at 1.99. The home side scored first on the 38th minute and followed with a second in the 59th. Lyon although now a man-down from a red-card were looking dominant, and it was only a case of when they would reply. This position closed when they scored later on, producing £100 profit.
Under / Over 2.5 Goals
I opened a lay position on unders at 1.96 for £100. When the third goal was scored, there was nothing else to do and a £100 profit was banked.
I hadn’t planned on entering this market, but when Lyon were looking for the equalizer (they must have had 5 or 6 corners in 5 late minutes), I decided to lay Montpellier at the low price of 1.04 for £200. They were very, very close to getting a well-deserved equalizer, but it wasn’t to be and Montpellier won 2-1.
However, should they have of scored, the £8 risk that was lost would have produced a further £200 profit.
A decent game, but with two red cards (one from each side), it then become more difficult to anticipate. At the end, this match banked £192.
Wednesday, 16th September, 2020
There’s more English League Cup games on today, but again as said previously, I really don’t want to delve in to this competition (at this stage).
Instead I target a Champions League Qualification match with:
- Ferencvaros v Dynamo Zagreb
Both of the above teams are very strong / champions in their respective domestic leagues (Hungary and Croatia). Both teams have quality, strong passing midfields and like to attack. I expect this will be an exciting encounter with the Hungarians to edge the game.
I undertake analysis on this game, and believe the best market to approach is match odds, backing Ferencvaros. However, I will not take a position until seeing how the teams come out in the initial 10 minutes or so.
The other match I am looking at trading on is in the French Ligue 1:
- PSG v Metz
After two recent league defeats, I really am expecting PSG to come out and win this match. However, their price at kick-off is still too short (1.3) and so I am prepared to take a ‘wait and see approach’ before committing.
Summary of Market Trading
Ferencvaros v Dynamo Zagreb
I backed Ferencvaros on 17 minutes in to the game with the score 1-0 (the home side scored in the 2nd minute). However, the price was still decent at 2.24. Zagreb equalize a few minutes later, so I take the opportunity to increase my position on the home side at 3.5. Ferencvaros then score a second in the 65th minute and I close the trades for a £ 96 profit.
PSG v Metz
After the price went up with game time, I backed PSG at 1.4 for £50 just to take a position. The match continued 0-0 for a considerable time, although PSG had chances and the Metz keeper made some great saves. I then backed them at further points in the match as their price increased. I call this incremental drip feeding, and do this quite often with games where a price starts low and increases. It’s actually a common strategy in the financial markets, such as when a stock price goes down, investors will often buy more if nothing untoward is being reported about the company. However, you need to be fairly certain about the price or outcome to take this approach. Others in the investment game will call it ‘throwing good money after bad’, but it all depends on what you are throwing it at.
It was obvious that Metz were now happy to run out a 0-0, but PSG still looked dominant, had urgency and were quick to respond to everything. In the end, PSG scored late, I quickly closed all positions, and the match ended 1-0, banking £157 profit.
The first match went almost as expected, the second not so much. I expected PSG to score much earlier on in the game, and possibly follow up with one or two more. However, the late goal allowed me to take further positions at higher prices, increasing profit. In total, these two matches banked £253.
It should also be noted that additional positions were taken when the price improved in both of these games. This helped increase profits at less risk, just by keeping faith with analysis and initial judgment.
Thursday, 17th September, 2020
There’s exactly 42 Europa League qualification matches on today, along with a host of other league and cup games from around the world. The tricky part is now to select the games on where the best opportunities might be.
The following is a summary of five games that I targeted for profit making.
Summary of Market Trading
Lokomotiv Plovdiv v Tottenham
The starting price of 1.26 on Tottenham beating a team away in Bulgaria, especially after seeing them so lackluster and goal-shy against Everton at the weekend, made me believe that laying Spurs would reap rewards in terms of a trade. I layed them at kick-off for £50 at 1.26, then again at 1.31 for another £50.
The Bulgarians scored first in the 71st minute, and I closed these trades for £77 profit.
Similar to the match odds price, the price on BTTS looked too short. I layed BTTS – No (meaning, I expected both teams to score) for £100 at an average price of 1.51. After Plovdiv scored, and with it seeming like Spurs had gone all Spursy and wouldn’t score, I closed the trade late in the second half for a £28 loss. Spurs actually scored a penalty in the 80th minute and scored a second goal 5 minutes later to win the game.
Honved v Malmo
This wasn’t a game that I was actively going to trade, but Malmo are top of the Swedish premier league and have already played 20 games this season. Honved are 11th in the Hungarian top division, although having played just 3 matches. Analysis showed that a Malmo win was likely, and their price at 1.64 looked decent.
I backed them for £100 at this price, and with no further trades banked £64 profit when they won the game 0-2.
Marseille v St Etienne
Over / Under 3.5
I looked at this French Ligue 1 match and from analysis thought it could contain goals. Before kick-off, I layed under 3.5 at 1.29 for £100. With a surprising early goal from the away side, I was confident Marseille would soon equalize and then score more. However, as time ticked on and with it not looking like their day, I closed the trade to take a small £12 profit.
Sao Paulo v River Plate
Officially, this match occurred on 18th September, but it all depends on your time-zone. The match is in the Conmebol Libertadores, which is the South American equivalent of the UEAFA Champions League for South American countries. I was interested in this match because it was between two of the top sides from Brazil and Argentina, and so I was expecting some technically good football. Earlier analysis pointed towards a draw, and so I took a tentative positon for £50 at 3.55.
The match ended 2-2, and the trades produced £97 profit.
FC Dallas v Colorado Rapids
The US MLS isn’t a league I would normally look at, predominantly because there’s already plenty of matches going on in the European leagues to be kept busy with. However, having opened an email from the ‘Predictology Daily Digest’, I scan through the selections. The one below, showed a decent price for the home team, and after carrying out some further analysis, it looks even better. I then check the Betfair prices, and I am able to back them at an increased price then the suggested 2, and so take a tentative back position at 2.26 for £50. Dallas scored twice in the first half and then ran out 4-1 winners, banking £63 profit.
If you have ever read the book titled ‘Rich Dad, Poor Dad’ by Robert Kiyosaki, you will have learned that one of his main messages is to create and have ‘multiple revenue streams’ to be financially independent and successful. For instance, if you have just one job that you are reliant on to pay your rent / mortgage, bills, food etc., what happens if the company you work for faces a down-turn and stops making money? What if it has to start laying-off its employees? What if you are one of those employees? Do you have a back-up plan, other than looking for another job in a similar field? Chances are, similar companies are also under pressure and won’t be hiring.
The key here then, is diversification. Either in the skills that you have, or the revenue streams that you have in place already.
Taking a narrow view in terms of football trading, the Coronavirus pandemic actually started me on this path. When all leagues in the world stopped, I looked at the one league that continued, and began trading the matches in Belarus. Many others did the same, and they also probably know the Belarusian teams and players, and probably also smile when Slutz are playing Brest!
Today, the MLS also proved to be a league that can be turned to, especially as it runs seasonally different to other European leagues (late February to mid-October). Knowledge and experience in another league, running at different times is another string in your bow, and another potential revenue stream through diversification, and one that I will personally continue to follow and become more knowledgeable on.
After a busy evening following five matches, £284 profit was banked.
Friday, 18th September, 2020
There’s not as many key matches on today, especially from English leagues. Instead I turn my attention to the German and French leagues for opportunities.
Summary of Market Trading
Hamburger v Fortuna Dusseldorf
This match was in the Bundesliga 2 (German second division). However, it had plenty of liquidity in the market on Betfair, and so I undertook analysis which showed a Hamburger win was most likely. I backed them at 2.24 for £50. After Hamburger scored, I closed the trade for £56 profit.
Bayern Munich v Schalke 04
I was interested in this match, but backing the outcome I expected didn’t appeal, because Bayern’s price at kick-off was around 1.11!
Instead, I took a conservative position in the BTTS – ‘No’ market at 1.94 for £50. After it appeared that Schalke would be too busy defending against a rampant Bayern, the trade was left alone and £47 profit was banked.
Lyon v Nimes
Over / Under 2.5
I looked at this French Ligue 1 match and from analysis a Lyon win was most likely, but the price was very short, yet under 2.5 goals seemed equally as likely. I took a lay position on overs at kick-off for £101 at 1.52. Later in the second half with the score the 0-0, but with Lyon having more urgency, I closed the trade for £61 profit.
Just after kick-off, I took a lay position on BTTS – ‘Yes’ at 2 for £90. I had been trying to get matched pre-kick-off for 1.9, but it didn’t happen. Again, in the second half when Lyon were pressing and looking likely to score, I closed the trade for £42 profit. The match however ended 0-0, even though the price on Lyon at the start was just 1.3.
Some interesting games were on, with Bayern Munich beating Schalke 8-0 the pick of the bunch. Trading wise it was slightly more subdued and cautious, but the end result was £206 profit. None of the markets were difficult work, or required additional trades (except to close) or hedging in other markets. It was like everything went to plan, with minimum fuss or stress.
After a busy week of football, and with more league games covered than cup competitions, £1,414 was banked (minus 5% Betfair commission).
Looking ahead to tomorrow there’s four Premier League games taking place, all at different times. Of course through, before deciding on which games to engage with, analysis must be undertaken.
Jon is the Founder and Chief Tipster at Football Advisor and Predictoloy. He started life as data analyst in the digital marketing field before find his true calling in the world of Football and Horse Racing Betting.
Jon has been sharing his professional expertise since 2009 and specialises in using objective data analysis and subjective experience of betting built up over more than a decade of professional betting.
In 2014, Jon also launched (and continues to run) the trusted Football Advisor service service which provides a variety of football and horse racing betting models and portfolios. A few years later, Jon launched the Predictology platform which is the worlds first betting system builder and analyser covering a wealth of football betting related statistics covering more than 200,000 matches.
Jon has also lent his knowledge and expertise to several of the trusted Premium Services offered by the respected Secret Betting Club, including Football Lay Profits. Racing Bet Profits and, most recently, Racing Lay Profits.