Winning At Soccer Betting - Luck or Skills?

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Winning At Soccer Betting - Luck or Skills?

Luck or skills remains one of the top heated argument topics amongst bettors when we talk of soccer betting. You might have wondered at one point in time, what the best practice for winning big was. Or even argued how skilled and trained in the techniques of soccer betting one needs to be before hitting the jackpot. However, it might just all be down to pure luck. The debate goes on.

Similar to the question of chicken or egg, we cannot downplay neither luck or skill when it comes to soccer betting - they both influence ones winning in a game however, one is believed to be more reliable.

Soccer betting may look like a game of chance to anybody else, but not for successful expert punters. They did not become successful by relying on good luck alone. It may be so for some casino games, but with sports, a lot of factors come into play. We shall further dissect the topic to get a better understanding of the concept.

Luck Vs Skills

As a newbie who has never wagered a bet before, you're right to think you win by just getting lucky. One cannot possibly know the result of a sporting event before it has begun unless one possesses a crystal ball that shows the outcome of future events just like in movies.

Contrary to such belief, there is a certain crop of people who skillfully make a fortune out of soccer betting. No pun intended. These successful punters make good returns on something more quantifiable than luck.

As much as they both play important roles in soccer betting, they don't have equal relevance. The question on our lips then will be — which of them has a bigger role to play in winning the jackpot? What games require skills and which rely on luck?

Typically, some sports provides a better betting experience than soccer. This is to say; some sports are more predictable than soccer. Also, having in-depth knowledge of the type of sports you're placing your bet on is a huge helpful factor to winning. Once you can read a team's style of play or a certain coach's tactics, the odds of relying on luck will be drastically reduced.

According to General Lynch, former U.S. Attorney, "Sports betting involves substantial skill." To take true advantage of the odds that don't portray the likelihood of a game's outcome, one must have superior knowledge of the game.

Going on, he points out that soccer bettors do not legally influence a game's outcome. However, they can influence the "point spread or "betting line" to improve the odds and make a winning bet. To be more specific, when a bettor decides to wager a huge bet on a certain team, he first places a few smaller bets on the other. Thereby, moving the betting line to favor the larger bet of intent.

Over time, it has indeed been proven that a sound knowledge in sports and prowess for predicting outcomes aids professional soccer betting. Nevertheless, there exist several other helpful tips to apply for upcoming punters.

These tips and skills however, do not guarantee 100 percent success. Some games are so complex and dexterous that they cannot simply be determined by pure skill. Luck still unarguably plays a significant part. Hence, the sheer excitement that has greatly followed sports betting till date.

A Case of Luck Mixed with Skills

Analyzing soccer betting as a case of mixed luck and skills is better explained in the book, The Success Equation: Untangling Skill and Luck in Business, Sports and Investing by Michael Mauboussin. There, one learns of betting alternatives in the form of lotteries and roulette. On another end, we see games that are highly based on skills like chess. Sports balance somewhere in the middle.

Keeping in mind how skills guarantee less of a win than luck in soccer betting, makes it a riskier albeit more fun betting option. Even for a sports guru, there is a realistic chance of losing a bet. More so, with the increased participants in a football game, there is increased randomness in the outcome of the game. Hence, the bigger part luck plays in such a game.

In reality, the two factors provide game-winning abilities. The dependence on one over the other could well be down to one's aspirations as a soccer bettor. For some, it could pass as a hobby or some casual activity. To others who aim to do it professionally, you find them honing their betting skills. There are still others who have hit that grand win within a few weeks of their first trial, often without prior betting knowledge whatsoever. However, the longer winning streaks are only a reward for the dedicated punters.

Which Is of Greater Relevance?

To a large extent, betting in all its forms greatly relies on luck. The question then is – How much of these games depend on luck and how much skills need to be involved? As some casino games rely on sheer luck and others on knowledge and skills, so do soccer betting.

Asking a new punter to bet on a game he knows nothing about is most likely to yield a result based on luck. Consequently, if he has a better grasp of the gameplay, previous performances and tactics of a team, his winning chances automatically increase. As a result, knowledge and skills in a certain sport have great relevance in turning a wager into a win.

Some Sports Are Better Predictable

Some sports give players a higher winning odd than the others, much unlike casino games which are based solely on luck and random chance. Save for poker games, though, as there happen to be professionals who make a nice living out of it. However, as long as the luck vs skills arguments in sports drags on, the level of skill a punter possesses can be tied to the skill level of players of the sport.

A good example can be drawn from a game of basketball which allows for more scoring chances than a hockey game, for instance. With less probability for randomness, this pitches hockey as a more predictable sport.

Michael Lopez, a Skidmore College Statistician in New York City once pointed out the probability of defining an early lucky break in a game of hockey. It's a call that could well decide the outcome of the game, as compared to a basketball game.

Take into account the world's favorite sport, football. With a possible outcome of a win, draw or loss, it is extremely difficult to predict. Not to mention the 22 players involved in a single match, further throwing its randomness up a notch. Herein, a very good punter will have to apply all his skills and experience to successfully predict the outcome of a match. Another similar yet different sport with an unpredictable nature is Tennis. With only two players involved, inconsistency can play a huge part in picking a favorite to win.

On another scale, with volleyball you now have a game more favorable for sports betting more so if you have good background knowledge of the team you're rooting for. The ugly catch here is, as much as the game is easier to predict for punters, it doesn't pay out as much. This ultimately results in fewer bettors.

It is now evident that luck comes to play in a game before it is considered a worthy betting option. The higher the unpredictability, the bigger the odds and the bigger the winnings. We can deduce that luck and skills in sports betting are a complementary mix for a nice payout in any game.

How To Maximize Your Winning Chances as A Sports Bettor

As the saying goes, "anything can happen," so do sporting events. One is oblivious of the ways to control such events to favor one. Nonetheless, as a sports bettor, you can harness several skills and techniques to blow the wind of favor in your direction. Some of the most important ones are listed here.

Play Without Sentiments: It is almost natural to back a team you always support to win. It's okay if you're not staking any money on it however, it is wrong to do so when betting is involved. When you decide to go into sports betting, every automatic favoritism for any team flies out the window, and reason walks in through the door. Sentiments simply should not count in your decision. A logical bet involves wagering on the most likely team to win even if they are your least favorite team. Else, it will be double the pain; losing your wager coupled with a loss to your favorite team.

● Study Patterns

It's almost certain some events reoccur through a period. You should keep a record of such events throughout your betting history. This helps you score an advantage in matches with a similar scenario. Therefore, relying on some lucky patch is reduced to the barest minimum. You equally score higher chances of big wins.

● Gamble responsibly

There's always that tendency to lavish more than planned while betting. That's why a bankroll management scheme is necessary. A suitable budget for your betting purposes can be set up to only let you spend on specific daily, weekly or monthly basis. The richest bettors are not exempted as money, they say, is volatile. A sturdy limit to the amount that goes into betting needs to be strictly adhered to. In the absence of controlled betting expenses, overspending and addiction to recovering lost wagers become the outcome. This results in placing desperate and rather irrational bets leading to further despair.

● Seek To Add Value

A professional soccer bettor looks to efficiently manage his bet with his budget and make maximal profits. This involves adding value by seeking bets priced lower than their worth.

● Make Selective Choices

Fortunately, online bookmakers these days have an exhausting list of sports options for punters of every category. There are also more than enough odds selections and events to choose from in a single game. This, however, comes with a huge responsibility. Make sure to select bets that suit your strategic interest only. Selecting several different odds on a single wager at a time can lead to waste. Therefore, careful strategic planning and a developed betting knowledge is a prerequisite to successful sports betting.

FAQs in Sports Betting

1. How can I know the best bookmaker to choose?

There are thousands of bookmakers online with many different enticing offers and features. However, it is up to you to lay down your priorities. Then match those priorities with research on the bookmakers that best suits you. Any offers on display from them will only be a plus.

2. How much money is advisable to bet?
This is probably the most frequent question asked by bettors. However, there is no standard for how much or how little is advisable to spend on betting. It is more advisable to bet according to your stipulated budget and monitor your finances as you do so. You must also bear in mind that not every punter's financial might is the same. So, your gambling habit should be unique to you.

3. What are the largest and smallest possible bets?
There is also no standard answer to this question, as every bookmaker comes with a somewhat unique package. There are also increasing options every day. However, the largest and smallest bets often depend on the sports you opt for, the types of bet you intend to place and ultimately, the bookmaker you choose. This information can be obtained from the section on the site that reads limits and minimum requirements.


We believe any punter enthusiastic about sports betting would find this article educating and interesting. Choosing between luck and skills remains a forever debate. Nonetheless, you cannot undermine the role of both factors.

A punter can increase his/her chances of winning with in-depth research on a game, studying H2H, and other tactics. But even after getting all these rights, it’s possible to end up not winning.

For instance, if a star player gets injured ten minutes into the game or if a defender of the favorite scores an own goal, it could alter the expected result of the game. The favorite team may end up losing and the punter loses his bet. In this case, the punter simply did not have luck on their side.

While using strategies and tactics helps, anything can happen before or during the game to render your betting tactics ineffective. Thus, you still need a balance of luck and skills to excel in soccer betting.

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