Many readers will know I use betting odds as a tool for playing fantasy football. Here’s an article which looks at the way I use them and how they can help and hinder.
Can betting odds help your fantasy football team?
Any of you who are regular readers of the site will know that I use betting odds as an integral part of my fantasy premier league decision making. The two main odds that are relevant are anytime goal scorer odds and clean sheet odds. However team odds to win can also be a helpful tool.
It’s mainly about the relativity of the odds more than the actual odds themselves.
Anytime goalscorer odds are exactly what they say. They give the odds for a player scoring 1 goal at anytime during the course of a game.
Most readers will know that ideally I like to transfer in an attacking player who is in good form, has good future fixtures and I’m transferring him in with a good entry point. Anytime goal scorer odds is one way of assessing that entry test. It also provides an immediate comparison to other options you might be considering.
Clean sheet odds
These are the odds that a team will get a clean sheet ie the opponent won’t score a goal against you.
This is useful for assessing a defender transfer for the same reasons as the attacking player above. Ideally I would want to transfer in a defender from a team with good underlying defensive traits, with good fixtures ahead as well as well as a good entry point for the transfer. Assessing the entire gameweeks fixture list will give a comparison for which teams defence has the best chance of returning clean sheet points. That may play a crucial part in your transfer decision.
Secondly I have often picked my defensive players for the gameweek lineup by comparing the clean sheet odds between them. So last week Alexander Arnold at home to West Ham and Boly home to Norwich were nailed on choices to start in defence for my team. However the 3rd defender was between Rico at Burnley (clean sheet odds £3.40), Holgate at Arsenal (clean sheet odds £5.00) and Soyuncu at Manchester City (clean sheet odds £6.50). I used those odds to help pick Rico as the choice of defender in my backline of 3.
It’s also worth noting that if you’re picking a centre back as a defender you can also use the anytime goal scorer odds as a way of comparing their relative scoring chances. For example in For example in the fantasy football betting in the Liverpool v West Ham GW27 fixture Van Dijk was £4.20 to score compared to his centre back partner Joe Gomez who was £12.00. So there is a real difference in attacking potential according to the bookies. You then assess if that attacking potential, among other factors, is worth the extra price paid for Van Dijk.
Team to win odds
I don’t use these odds as frequently as the others but in looking for a potential captain for my team I want to know that the team he plays for is very likely to win and probably in the 2 or 3 teams most likely to win during that gameweek. Obviously there are exceptions but it’s a good foundation to start with. At the moment that means you’re often looking at Liverpool and Manchester City as your starting point. This week gone though it was interesting that both Southampton v Aston Villa and Wolves v Norwich had 2 of the stronger odds to win with Manchester City playing Leicester away. That brought Jimenez of Wolves and Ings of Southampton into the captain reckoning or at least the vice captain choice as Salah home to West Ham was always going to be an overwhelming favourite. As it was both Southampton and Wolves won easily with Jimenez scoring
I have often used a comparison between anytime goal score odds and clean sheet odds as a method of selecting my bench and bench order. In the example above Cantwell was £4.00 to score so he was the first bench player with Rico starting as I said above.
It’s not meant to be a hard and fast rule just food for thought although anecdotally I feel like when I stray away from it and make a more gut feel decision I get burned.
Some of the limitations of the above
Anytime goalscorer odds
Anytime goalscorer odds assumes the player starts and doesn’t count assist potential. That means in any decision you make using these odds you have to make an assessment of the players gametime risk in starting or not. The odds tend to massively go against the creators in teams who rely on assists. A good example is Kevin De Bruyne who although is one of the top points scorers in fantasy football regularly has poor anytime goalscorer odds as he is predominantly an assist based player. These odds are therefore not a great tool for assessing him and players like him as a transfer option.
Comparing the attacking potential of full backs who mainly assist compared to centre backs who score is a real limitation.
Until assist odds become a regular resource then this will always be a limitation
Clean sheet odds
The main part of a defenders points armoury is the clean sheet points but defenders have different attacking potential through goals and assists and also bonus potential in fantasy premier league. So the odds aren’t the complete answer
Team to win odds
The odds to win don’t say by how much. A defensively strong team against a weak attacking team may be big favourites to win. It doesn’t mean that the striker in that team will be a good captain choice as the score to win could be 1-0. Like any of the other odds it’s good food for though.
I hope you found that useful and gives more information on how I use these odds in articles.