Based on the opening odds, this was a match that held a lot of potential. I focus in particular on the Fulltime Result odds and the 1st Goal odds. These alone tell me whether a match is worth following.
- When it comes to Fulltime odds, there must be a strong favourite to win the match
- When it comes to 1st Goal odds, this same team must be very strong favourites to score first.
Let’s see how the opening odds for this match looked.
As we can see from the above, FC Zorka were very strong favourites to win the match, at 1/100. FC Zorka were also very strong favourites to score the first goal, at 1/40.
So, these odds tell me that we have a team that is expected to dominate the match and score with relative ease. If you have read The Strategy, you will know that I focus on First Half Goal odds, placing bets on one more goal being scored in the first half when the odds and in-play stats are right. Let’s see how this game developed and learn if an opportunity to profit presented itself.
Stats at 05:00
Five minutes into the match and FC Zorka are dominating, though perhaps not as much as we might ideally like to be seeing. The key in-play stats that we look at are the number of Dangerous Attacks and the number of Shots on Target.
FC Zorka have made eight dangerous attacks, which is a healthy number for a five minute period, but they have not had a shot on target yet. They have also allowed FK Botsor make two dangerous attacks, which is not ideal. We really want to see the stronger team dominating in a relentless manner. But it is still early and the next five minutes will tell a lot.
At 06:25 FC Zorka score the first goal with their first shot on target. A positive sign and an indication perhaps that they are going to really dominate this first half and score repeatedly. Let’s see how things stood at the ten minute mark.
Stats at 10:00
By the end of the tenth minute, FC Zorka have made 18 dangerous attacks, had one shot on target and scored once. They have made 10 more dangerous attacks since the end of the fifth minute, which is impressive. But one shot of target is not great. We want to see the stronger team getting into positions where they are threatening to score on a more regular basis.
Stats at 15:00
By the end of the fifteenth minute, FC Zorka are still dominating in terms of dangerous attacks, having made 24 since the match kicked off. They are dominating possession and not allowing FK Botsor to attack. All very positive. But they are not hitting the target, having done so only once when they scored in the seventh minute. They are still very strong favourites to score the next goal, at 1/20, but the fact that they have only had one shot on target at the fifteenth minute indicates to me that this is not the ideal opportunity to place a profitable bet.
Stats at 20:00
By the end of the 20th minute, the story is much the same: FC Zorka dominating and making plenty of dangerous attacks, but not hitting the target. The fact that they have only won a single corner at this stage in the match is also not great.
However, I do feel that with the amount of possession they are having and the fact that they are making this many dangerous attacks – coupled with odds on them scoring the next goal remaining very short – FC Zorka will probably score again in the first half.
And they do score again, at 24:36, with their second shot on target.
We are now nearing the point in the half when odds on there being at least one more goal become 1/2, which are exactly the odds I am waiting for. At the moment odds on there being over 3.5 first half goals are 5/6. I am waiting for the odds on there being over 2.5 first half goals to become 1/2 before I will consider placing a bet.
Where are the shots on target occurring?
It’s always worth noting where the shots on target are occurring. As I have said before, not all shots on target are equal. You ideally want to be seeing these shots occurring inside the box.
Let’s see where FC Zorka’s two shots originated from.
As you can see from the above, one shot occurred just inside the box and the other just outside. And at 26:04, FC Zorka have another shot on target.
This, as you can see below, occurred just on the edge of the box.
Ideally, you would like to see these shots occurring closer to the goal, which would signal a real ability of the stronger team to penetrate the weaker team’s defense and threaten the goal. In this case, however, FC Zorka are having to take their shots at the edge of the box or just outside it.
The time of the goals
Another thing that you should pay heed to is the times of the goals. FC Zorka have scored two goals. The first was scored in the seventh minute, the second in the twenty-fifth. So, almost 20 minutes between the goals. This is not ideal. You would prefer to see the gap between the two goals be less, and to see a greater number of shots occurring, especially after the second goal is scored. This would signal a strong likelihood that another goal will be scored.
Let’s now see how the stats looked at the end of the 30th minute.
Stats at 30:00
Almost six minutes have passed since FC Zorka scored their second goal. Since then, they have had made eight further dangerous attacks and had one more shot on target.
As I said, however, at the fifteenth minute point, the low number of shots on target is the main reason why I have all but ruled this game out as an opportunity to place a bet when the odds on there being one more goal become 1/2, which is now only minutes away. Another factor, as I mentioned above is the gap in time between the goals that have been scored.
The odds on there being Over 2.5 First Half Goals become 1/2 during the 33rd minute. I do not take the bet for the reasons outlined above.
As the minutes pass, the decision seems justified. Despite their consistent attacking, FC Zorka just do not look like they are going to score another goal in the first half.
As you can see from the timeline below, FC Zorka have won precious few corners over the course of the half, another signal that their attacks are not as threatening as we would like them to be.
Stats at 40:00
At the end of the 40th minute, things do not look much different. FC Zorka have made 53 dangerous attacks at this point, a very healthy number, but they have not penetrated deep enough with these attacks and are just not getting in positions where they can take shots.
Stats at Half Time
At the end of the first half, FC Zorka have made another eleven dangerous attacks and have had one more shot on target, an effort from outside the box.
We can see from the image below where the four shots on target originated.
As I said at the beginning, this was an encounter that held much promise. FC Zorka were very strong favourites to win the match and to score the first goal. They attacked in a strong and consistent manner, but ultimately lacked bite in their attacks, having only four shots on target by the end of the half. Two of these shots occurred outside the box, which is not ideal. Although I was pretty confident that they would score a second goal, I was never sure enough that there would be a third. And so, when the odds on there being Over 2.5 First Half Goals became 1/2, I let it go. There was insufficient evidence of the kind of dominance and threat that we need to be seeing from the stronger side when it comes to taking this bet.
This match again highlights the necessity of having a strategy or system that you consistently adhere to. Having a successful set of criteria that you bring to bear on each of the matches you follow takes the guess work out of what you are doing and ensures you avoid making gut, emotional decisions. When you have a strategy that you know works and have the discipline to implement it, you will keep your losses to a minimum and maximise your profits.