Saturday, 22 December 2007

18 - Scottish Premier League Hopes

Upon closer inspection, the two matches I was considering, Charlton v Hull and Nottingham Forest v Port Vale, are not as clear as I first thought.

Both Hull and Port Vale have reasonable away records and could prove tough for their respective opponents. Therefore I will not be betting on either of their matches.

A match I hadn't spotted previously was hidden away in the Legaue Two fixtures. Chesterfield v Wrexham. Chesterfield are high in the table and pushing for promotion while Wrexham have been playing poorly and could find it very tough to get anything out of the match. However last week's home defeat to Rochdale means I won't be risking my money on the Saltergate side.

In the Scottish Premier league I usually only consider betting when the Old Firm meet a lowly relegation candidate but today I have found a potential wager outside of the Glasgow pair.

Dundee Utd have an excellent home record with six wins from eight matches and have only conceded two goals so far at home. Today they meet Gretna, who are rooted to the foot of the table and have only two points to show from there travels this season.

Gretna have recently taken points from Kilmarnock and Hearts, however the Orange side of Dundee should prove to be a much sterner test.

Merely because the Dundee side are not of the calibre which I usually bet on, I will bet only 10%of the account on this game.

This means a bet of £12.95 on a Dundee Utd victory.

Wednesday, 19 December 2007

18 - Christmas Football Fixture List

The fixtures lists are not giving me any Christmas cheer as yet. I am desperate to make a et this week after the dull weekend last time, finding one that meets my rules is turning out to be quite tough though.

This weekend Man Utd and Liverpool are both playing at home, but playing sides in good form, Portsmouth and Everton, who cannot be relied upon to roll over and let the big sides take the points.

Newcastle have started to get their house in order with a couple of recent wins, but I don't consider their form to be good enough to gurantee a win, even against bottom club Derby, and in the Scottish Premier league, it is more of the same with Celtic taking on Hibernian at home, however Hibs have played well this season and are currently 4th.

In the Championship there is one slightly interesting fixture with Charlton taking on Hull. The London side have a good home record and Hull's away form is not so hot.

Further down the footballing pyramid I did find a possible match to bet on, Nottingham Forest v Port Vale. Forest are currently 3rd and the Vale are lying in 22nd spot, only 3 points from the foot of the table.

In league two there is also the prospect for a win for 3rd placed Peterborough playing the 18th placed Bradford City.

To be honest though, the choices are not as easy as I'd like and so I'll have a think about these choices while finishing off my Christmas shopping before placing any bets.

Saturday, 15 December 2007

17: No suitable matches

I have decided against trawling through the European leagues for a suitable match as I don't know enough about the sides in question.

Plus of course, most of the big sides from each league were in action in the Champions League this week, which could mean some odd results.

Hopefully there will be some easier fixtures next time around.

Thursday, 13 December 2007

17: Grand Slam Sunday

The big four sides play each other on Sunday, meaning there are no matches that are easy to predict in the premier league.

In the Championship, Watford play mid-table Plymouth and West Brom and Charlton meet at the Hawthorns to fight for second place.

In Scotland, neither Rangers nor Celtic have a simple home match.

The same can be said for Swansea, Carlisle and Leeds in League 1, MK Dons, Peterborough and Darlington in League 2 AND Aldershot and Torquay in the Blue Square Premier.

Unless I can get some inspiration from a European league or lower Scottish division, it looks as though this week will be without a wager. Which is a shame after the success last week.

Monday, 10 December 2007

Week 16: Chelsea and Man Utd boost the coffers

It is strange that on the weekend where I chose to bet on two matches from the 'big four', the other two clubs which comprise the group lost their unbeaten runs.

However, the losers Arsenal and Liverpool, were both away from home and both have fixtures in the Champions league this week which could partly explain their losses.

Thankfully, the results of the matches I chose were never in doubt. Man Utd and Chelsea disposed of Derby and Sunderland respectively, although Derby County did strangely manage their first goal away from home at Old Trafford.

Because of the unlikeliness of a surprise, the odds I bet at were poor.

I got back winnings of only £1.43 for the Man Utd match and £2.51 from the Chelsea game.

This increases my total by £3.94.

New balance £129.52

Next week could be tough as it is Sky's so-called 'Grand Slam Sunday' where the big four meet each other.

Friday, 7 December 2007

Week 16: Two football matches to bet on

With two matches to choose between, this week has been the hardest of all to decide what to do.

Both seem obvious choices, but to actually pick one from the other has been very difficult to do.

Passing up the opportunity to bet on one of these matches also seems criminal, so I am going to bet on both of the games for a home win.

This will mean that I can spread the risk of my bet while also increasing my profit margin slightly.

I won't bet a full 15% on both matches because I don't want to risk all of the profit of my account in one weekend, however 10% on each seems a fair result.

£12.55 on Man Utd
£12.55 on Cheslea

Thursday, 6 December 2007

Week 16: Two Options

Since this project began I have never been blessed with 2 matches that look so easy to predict in a single weekend. Both Man Utd v Derby and Chelsea v Sunderland look like certain home wins to me.

The real decision is whether I should bet on one game or split my bet over the two. If either of these matches had been the only predictable match in a weekend, I would not have hesitated in betting 15% of the account on it. But if I bet on both, should it be 15% on each or just a less risky 10% to make a 20% stake overall.

Unfortunately, another arrangement which I would have enjoyed would have been to bet on one match, then, after weighing up the result, bet on the next match on Saturday evening. However both games are at 3pm on Saturday so it is not possible.

Before I get carried away though, I should consider the matches themselves. Man Utd and Chelsea are both playing well at home. They are currently second and third in the overall form tables and are both unbeaten at home. Man Utd have won an impressive 7 out of 8 at home but Chelsea only 4 out of their 7.

Derby County are in free fall, however they have recently changed their manager. which could be a telling factor. I remember Alan Curbishley's first game at West Ham last year when they beat Man Utd. But of course, they had home advantage for that match.

Chelsea haven't got the same all-conquering home form, however they have been much better since Avram Grant took over and seem to suit the more attacking style employed by the Israeli.

I will consider my options and make a judgment tomorrow of how I will play these 2 fixtures.

Monday, 3 December 2007

Week 15: Result - Win for Manchester United

Another £3.30 is added to the bank after Christiano Ronaldo bags a brace to put Man Utd into second place in the premiership.

By the match report, it sounds as though the Red Devil's strike force made hard work of killing off Fulham and they struggled to make long periods of pressure count, which is a worry for this blog, as it only takes a single match to upset weeks of hard work.

However, although I don't usually like to speculate on the following week's fixtures, Alex Ferguson will be glad that his misfiring strikers have a home match against Derby next Saturday, which could mean that they get plenty of shooting practice.

Derby have yet to win away from home, and in fact have not yet scored on their travels. Getting their first away points at Old Trafford surely isn't possible is it?

New balance: £125.58

Thursday, 29 November 2007

Week 15: Red Devils to beat the Cottagers

My decision this week was to bet on either Liverpool or Man Utd for home wins.

Liverpool beat Porto 4-1 to make qualification for the latter rounds a strong possibility however the result was closer than the scoreline suggests and the match was level at 1-1 until the 78th minute. Playing on Sunday, the reds have just 3 days to recover before meeting Bolton.

Man Utd beat Sporting Lisbon on Tuesday to gurantee top spot in their Champions League group. It was a tight match and United left it late to get the winner. Luckily for them, their match with Fulham is not until Monday evening, giving them 5 days recovery time.

Both of the teams won their Champions League ties and neither had to travel anywhere for them.

The away sides this weekend, Bolton and Fulham, have equally poor away form with neither winning an away game yet, while they have managed a few draws each.

After much deliberation, my final choice is Man Utd because of the extra couple of days to recover and because Bolton may feel full of confidence due to their home win over the Champions last weekend.

Again, I am wary of Fulham, as they are the side that lost me money earlier in the season when they drew with Chelsea. However I have had success since when predicting their demise at Anfield.

To follow my rules strictly, I shouldn't be betting on a side in poor form. Man Utd lost a single match so I am not sure that it means they are in poor form, however it will be refelected in my reduced bet of 10% on the win rather than the usual 15%.

10% on a Man Utd win means £12.28 on a win for the Old Trafford outift.

Monday, 26 November 2007

Week 14: Results - Arsenal leave it late

Luckily, I was not tracking the results on Saturday as it would have been a nail-biting afternoon with Arsenal leaving it so late to score against Wigan.

The league leaders got two goals in the final 10 minutes to secure a win though and gave me a profit of £3.55 and the win takes my profits to highest total yet, £122.28.

Next week, their are three matches which I can consider, but none that stick out as exceptionally easy to predict.

Chelsea meet West Ham, Liverpool play a resurgent Bolton and Man Utd host Fulham.

The Chelsea match can be discounted because of the local derby element and Bolton would be a risky choice after their confidence boosting win against Man Utd this weekend.

This only leaves Man Utd versus Fulham. The reds lost to Bolton, however it will most probably spur them onto a much inproved performance against Fulham, expecially in front of their home fans.

I will wait to see how the teams fare in the Champions league before making any choices.

Balance £122.28

Thursday, 22 November 2007

Week 14: The Post Steve McLaren Era

The despair of last night’s England match is now a distant memory and I can concentrate on winning a profit this weekend.

It’s been 6 days since my last post and I didn’t even make a bet last time around and so I am desperate to have a go this week.

The first fixture in the list is a beauty. Wigan always struggle against the top teams in the Premiership and they meet a table-topping Arsenal side in superb form who have beaten all comers over the last few weeks. Some of the football they have been playing has been awesome.

It sounds as though Diaby and Flamini may have picked up injuries in the French international midweek however Robin Van Persie is now back in full training and could feature. Anyway, the Arsenal squad is strong enough to handle a couple of losses.

Therefore I will pile 15% of the account on a home win.

I forgot to post my balance last week, but I can assure you that after the Liverpool win over Fulham two weeks ago it had grown to £118.73.

That means a £17.80 bet on the Gooners to beat the Latics!

Wednesday, 14 November 2007

Week 13: Nothing Doing

This weekend's fixture's are the worst yet!

I don't feel confident betting on International matches as they are much less predictable than standard league matches in club football.

But unfortunately the main leagues (Premier/Championship/Scots Premier) are all on a break for the Internationals and in the leagues below, there isn't a single game I can find worth betting on.

Nottingham Forest and Carlisle aren't playing, Leeds have a tough match versus Swindon and in League 2, the top 3 sides, MK Dons, Hereford and Peterborough, are all away from home.

Ridiculously, in Scottish divisions 1, 2 and 3 each of the top two sides are playing each other, ruling out any predictable match-ups which I will take as a sign not to wager anything at all.

I will attempt to start thinking about the next set of matches on the 24th, if only to stop myself getting wound up by the English Euro Qualification issue that threatens to overshadow the weekend.

My two pence worth: Don't sack Steve McLaren unless there is someone better to replace him with.

Saturday, 10 November 2007

Week 12: Close Call

I spent the whole week deciding between 2 matches, both of which ended up being no where near being easy home wins. It seems that my mid-week worries were well justified.

Colchester held Watford to a 2-2 draw, with Marlon King having a penalty saved before scoring the equaliser minutes later.

Liverpool, the team I eventually backed, left it extremely late to beat Fulham. 2 goals in the final 10 minutes gave the home side the 3 points and gave my betting account another welcome boost.

I wasn't sure about the match and so I only made a 10% bet, which paid out £3.08. It's a small win but at least it is in the right direction.

I think this week is one that probably should have been avoided.

Week 12: Decision Time

I have found the choice this week extremely hard.

On the one hand I have Fulham, who messed up all my plans with a draw against Chelsea a few weeks ago and on the other I have Watford who are playing Colchester who managed to beat West Brom on the 20th of October.

Although I feel Colchester are very poor away from home, the gulf between the sides is much larger in the Premier League.

I am not totally confident of Liverpool's win though as they had a busy night in europe mid-week, so I will only place a 10% bet, meaning an £11.56 wager.

Come on you reds!

Wednesday, 7 November 2007

Week 12: The Reds or the Hornets?

This week, I am again struggling to find a match I can rely on in the Premier League.

The only top vs bottom fixture is Liverpool taking on Fulham at Anfield. Liverpool have looked strong at home this season and are in top form after thrashing Besiktas 8-0 in the Champions league yesterday.

Fulham are yet to win away from home, but they drew with Chelsea at Stamford bridge, my only loss so far this season.

Before the season began I would have thought that Tottenham v Wigan would have been an assured choice, but after the way things have gone at White Hart Lane, the two teams are now on the same number of points at the foot of the table.

I trawled through the other divisions and found virtually no top teams playing at home against weak oppostion. Watford v Colchester became interesting when I realised Colchester have lost their last 3 away matches, however Watford lost last week at home, although it was against rivals West Brom.

Even the scottish premier league has no certainties this weekend with the Old Firm at home to Aberdeen and away at Falkirk.

I will mull over Liverpool and Watford for a couple of days before making my decision.

Monday, 5 November 2007

Week 11: Results - Rangers beat Inverness

This weekend Glasgow Rangers held up their side of the bargain to earn me another win. The odds were not ideal, but I did claim exactly £4 profit from a bet of just over £16.

Of the other top sides, most only picked up 1 point this weekend, Man Utd v Arsenal was a thrilling match which ended in a 2-2 draw, more surprisingly Liverpool only managed a point at Blackburn, the game finishing 0-0. Two matches I rightly avoided.

In the football league, Leeds's 13 match unbeaten run came to an end at league leaders Carlisle Utd with the Yorkshire men going down 3-1.

Derby County's woes continued with loss at Aston Villa, although this project may not be able to capitalise as their next away match against a decent side is a long while off. They meet Man Utd at Old Trafford on the 8th of December.

The £4 made this week almost takes me to the same level I reached earlier. This time I will try to make sure I don't make another mistake.

New balance £115.65

Thursday, 1 November 2007

Rangers continue good form

This week, for the first time, I placed my bet before the midweek fixtures. This is something that I should probably try to avoid in the future, as if Rangers had been beaten by Motherwell last night, in the CIS cup, I may well have begun to regret backing them for a win at the weekend.

Luckily they won 2-1, away from home, and so go into the match against Inverness in good form.

Always waiting for the midweek matches to be played out could prove difficult though as matches such as the UEFA cup are played on Thursday evenings, leaving only Fridays and Saturday mornings to study the fixture list and decide on a team to back.

I suppose I could shortlist a few matches at the beginning of a week, then confirm my final choice on a Friday.

I am definitely thinking about this far too much.

Monday, 29 October 2007

Week 11: Poor Options

Unfortunately, my strict rules mean that I am struggling to find a team to bet on this weekend.

The major Premier League sides are either playing each other (Man Utd v Arsenal), or playing away from home (Liverpool and Chelsea). Both of these conditions mean that I shouldn't risk my money on them.

That said, Wigan's record against the top sides is appalling and I can't see them managing to hold on for a point versus Chelsea, even at home. They have also lost their last 5 matches compared to Chelsea's thrashing of high flying Man City last Saturday.

I fully expect Aston Villa to take 3 points off lowly Derby County too, however, their form is not good enough for me to consider it a predictable match, even when up against the dismal rams.

Looking into the football league, Leeds Utd are on fire but too bad they are playing away this weekend, so I have had to take a look at the Scottish fixtures.

The only game that looks promising is Rangers v Inverness Cale Thistle. Rangers will be looking to keep up with Celtic at the top and Inverness have already struggled against the top sides with heavy losses against the old firm this season.

The odds will be much better for Chelsea v Wigan, but I will stick to the rules I set out at the beginning and bet on the easy win for Rangers.

I'll bet the full 15% this week which means a £16.65 bet.

Sunday, 28 October 2007

Week 10: Result

Man Utd beat Middlesbrough yesterday, which is great news for my project, however, the bookies seemed to see it coming and so I was only able to bet at low odds.

Unfortunately, as Middlesbrough have pulled off some surprising results against top teams over the last few years I wagered 10% rather than my usual 15%, which also hampered this weekend's profits. Together, these 2 factors meant I only made £2.39 on the match.

However, a win still sends the account balance in the right direction!

New balance 111.02

Thursday, 25 October 2007

Week 10: Martin Jol Out

Martin Jol left spurs last night after a dismal start to the season for his Spurs team. Tottenham looked like a good side last year and invested heavily in the summer, so it has been a surprise to everyone that they have struggled so much.

However the managerial changes at White Hart Lane make little difference to this project as they are not a side that has enough consistency to risk money on.

This weekend the surprise package so far, Manchester City, travel to Stamford Bridge to play Chelsea and then Liverpool and Arsenal meet at Anfield in an exciting fixture on Sunday.

The only match that looks predictable is the Man Utd vs Middlesbrough game on Saturday. Man Utd have won 4 out of 5 at home and Middlesbrough have lost 4 out of 5 away so far with their win being at Fulham.

However, because Man Utd played in europe this week and Middlesbrough have a reputation for raising their game against the top sides I am only going to bet 10% of my account. Meaning £10.86 on a home win.

If Rooney can carry on scoring as he has in the last few games, this should be an easy win.

Week 9: Result

Another crazy week has meant this results post is long overdue.

Luckily though this post has a successful result to report. The Arsenal v Bolton game last weekend went exactly as planned and gave me a boost of £4.23.

An excellent return on a £15.66 bet meaning my total now stands at £108.63

New Balance 108.63

Wednesday, 17 October 2007

Week 9: Making up for lost time

It took a successful International weekend to lighten the mood but finally the previous weekends disappointments have been laid to rest.

Losing money with Chelsea and missing out on the betting for the Man Utd v Wigan match was all forgotten after England's win v Estonia and the Rugby World Cup semi-final win against France.

Looking forward to this weekend, I now give me the chance to get back on a winning run.

I never would have thought that it could be possible, but Manchester City are starting to become a team I could consider backing. Their match v Birmingham is one that I fully expect City to win, however, we are only 9 games into the season and so I will not be getting carried away just yet.

The most predictable fixture is Arsenal v Bolton. Arsenal are on an amazing run and have won their last 10 matches.

Interestingly, this evening Sammy Lee left the Trotters 'by mutual consent' and so there is a chance that Bolton will play better than usual. However, Arsenal's current form should see them through against a side in the bottom 3.

15% on an Arsenal win is £15.66 - Come on you gooners!

Sunday, 7 October 2007

Week 8: Opportunities missed (2)

After the disaster last week from Chelsea drawing against Fulham I did not find any time at all to make bets this week as I have been organising a trip abroad.

Unfortunately, the likely matches (Man U v Wigan & Arseanl v Sunderland) both went to form, meaning I could have instantly retruned to winning ways.

If there is a silverlining, at least I did not lose any money this weekend!

I hope for similarly easy matches to predict on my return.

Balance, still £104.4

Wednesday, 3 October 2007

Week 7: Result - Disaster

The results had all been positive, the system seemed to good to be true, it was working.

But then I put a large stake on Chelsea to beat Fulham, and so lost £11.59 of my hard earned cash.

Looking back, I really should have known not to bet on it. Local derbies and betting on teams that have recently changed manager should be added to the rules as matches to steer clear of.

What I also failed to notice was that Chelsea had gone 3 matches without a win in the Premiership. A loss to Manu Utd was preceded by a draw with Man City and a further defeat at Aston Villa.

One of the factors I remember considering as I made my decision was that I had read that Chelsea had played some of their best football versus Man Utd.

Looking back, I realise the quote came from Avram Grant. Which leads me to add another rule to my system: 'Never trust the comments made by the team's manager'.

I must ensure that I remember the lessons learnt here, as the odds I bet on mean that I cannot afford many more mistakes.

New balance: £104.4

Friday, 28 September 2007

Week 7: Away wins not allowed, unfortunately!

The premiership has a few predictable football matches this weekend, however most have the strong side away from home. Wigan v Liverpool and Birmingham v Man Utd will surely end up with 3 points to the visiting side, however, betting on away teams is against my rules.

This leaves me with the Chelsea v Fulham derby match, which is not ideal.

My reasoning for still finding this bet attractive is that Fulham are not good away from home and Chelsea will be eager to get back to winning ways after the loss to Man Utd last weekend. At home, even after Jose Mourinho's departure, Chelsea will be a very strong side and Fulham will struggle to cope.

Purely because it is a derby match, I will only bet 10% of the account on the game.

Meaning I will put £11.59 on a Chelsea win.

Wednesday, 26 September 2007

Week 6 Results - Arsenal on top form

Betting on Arsenal seems to be a guaranteed way to win at the moment. They followed their impressive win in Europe by hammering Derby 5-0 and then went on to beat Newcastle in the Carling Cup last night.

My bet was on the league match with Derby and the correct prediction means I have added another £2.58 to my account.

I have now reached the point where a losing bet would put me right back to where I started in August. Although it is a milestone for my achievements so far, it reminds me that it can all go wrong very quickly.

New account balance: £115.99

Thursday, 20 September 2007

Week 6: Mourinho's exit makes no difference to this week's betting

Of the factors to consider this week, thankfully, Jose Mourinho is not one of them; Chelsea are to play Man Utd on Sunday, a match I would never but a bet on, whatever the circumstances.

The two matches I will consider are Arsenal v Derby and Liverpool v Birmingham.

Birmingham have looked steady this season and could make a fight of the match at Anfield. They are currently 12th and go into this match after a needed win against Bolton.

Liverpool had a tough European match in mid-week and played in Portugal meaning they may not be at their best on Saturday.

Arsenal also played in the Champions League, however their match was at home so the players did not have to travel. They were also two goals to the good early in the second half, meaning their players were able to take it a little easier toward the end of the game.

Derby did manage a win on Monday night versus Newcastle, however they are not strong enough to take on Arsenal and I expect Fabregas and Van Persie to cause them major problems at the Emirates.

Betting 15% of my account means £17 on an Arsenal win.

Tuesday, 18 September 2007

Surprise Reult for Derby County

Within hours of mentioning that a home side such as Derby can sometimes get a surprise result, I was surprised to learn that Derby got a surprise result against Newcastle, a 1-0 win.

With Arsenal playing in Europe midweek and Derby on a high, can I really bet on their match this weekend?

Monday, 17 September 2007

Week 5 Results: Celtic score 5 to give me another win

Inverness proved to be no match for rampant Celtic who eased to a 5-0 victory. Due to the liklihood of this victory though, the odds I got were not very impressive. From a bet of over £16 I only got a return of £2.48. Any profit will do though.

The account now stands at £113.41.

Tonight, Derby play Newcastle, which is a match I expect Newcastle to win. However, the rules state I can't bet on away sides for good reason. A home team can always pull off a surprise result.

I will still be hoping for a poor Derby performance tonight as next weekend they play away at Arsenal and after the way the Gunners demolished Tottenham I am already expecting a predictable match.

Unfortunately though there is the complication of the european ties. I will have to re-assess the weekends fixtures once the Champions league is out of the way.

Friday, 14 September 2007

Week 5: North of the Border

With the great results gained by England and the surprise performances from players such as Emile Heskey and Gareth Barry I will be resisting the urge to put all my money on wins for Wigan and Aston Villa.

This weekend's Premier League fixture list is a little disappointing. Chelsea v Blackburn is the only match I would consider a probable result, but Blackburn have been playing very well so far, and it would be unwise to bet on them losing here.

In the Championship, the league has not yet settled down. There are no teams on exceptional form yet and several of the sides at the foot of the table are in false positions.

I rate the strongest sides as West Brom, Charlton and Wolves and none of these three are playing at home this week, so I have no matches to back confidently.

Scotland is my next option and luckily, Celtic play Inverness Caledonian at Celtic Park. Celtic have won 4 out of their first 5 matches and Inverness have lost all 5. I hope this weekend isn't the start of a recovery for Inverness!

The odds I presume will be poor, however, I feel confident about the result. I will bet the full 15% which means a £16.63 bet on Celtic to win.

Tuesday, 4 September 2007

Week 4: Results

6 goals for Liverpool mean I have profited again. This time £3.39 was added to the account.

The win for Liverpool was very easy to predict as they are playing so well, while Derby are yet to find any form at the moment.

There are no premier league fixtures this weekend because of the International matches so I may have to turn my thoughts to the Scottish leagues.

New balance is £110.93

Wednesday, 29 August 2007

Week 4: So many choices...

This weekend has delivered several options for predictable home wins:
  • Liverpool v Derby
  • Man Utd v Sunderland
  • Newcastle v Wigan
  • Arsenal v Portsmouth
All 4 fixtures look likely, but which one to actually put my money on is another matter.

The Man Utd fixture has the extra spice of being Roy Keane's return to Old Trafford. I can't see Sunderland getting a draw but I don't want to risk betting against Keane and his fired-up team for this match.

Newcastle have started well and I expect them to grow under Sam Allardyce. However, they are not yet consistent enough for me to bet on. Plus of course, a winning goal from Titus Bramble would be the romantic result here. He took so much stick while at Newcastle, I imagine he'll be in the box for every free-kick and corner trying to get some revenge!

This leaves me with the choice between the Arsenal and Liverpool fixtures.

Arsenal and Liverpool are both very consistent winners at home, with Liverpool just edging it last season. They both have midweek european matches, however both squads are strong enough to cope.

The sides they face are Portsmouth and Derby. Derby, without a win so far, got a draw at Portsmouth on the opening day. Portsmouth have made a good start to the season and are improving. They drew with Man Utd and played well against Chelsea last weekend.

In midweek Derby were beaten by lowly Blackpool in the Carling Cup whereas Portsmouth beat Leeds 3-0. This could lower morale in Derby and they will struggle to pick themselves up for the trip to Anfield. Portsmouth could well be upbeat and may spring a surprise on Arsenal.

And so I will bet on Liverpool to beat Derby. 15% this time means a £16.13 bet.

Tuesday, 28 August 2007

Week 3: Two correct bets out of two so far!

Chelsea's win adds another £3.64 to my profits!

Two correct results out of two has got me off to a great start this season, I'm certainly glad that I didn't chose to back Man Utd, as their form could have cost me a lot of money.

I also feel justified in only placing a 10% bet this weekend, as Chelsea struggled to beat Portsmouth and only won by the odd goal.

Next week looks like a bumper set of predictable results. Liverpool, Man Utd and Newcastle are all playing teams from the other end of the table. I will have to have a long think about them before deciding on which to back though.

New balance: £107.54

Thursday, 23 August 2007

Week 3: Bet placed this time

Last week I chose not to bet, but the fixtures I had my eye on still came true, so I am eager to place a bet this weekend.

With Tottenham having a poor away record I expect them to lose at Old Trafford this weekend, however they are too good a team to bet against because they always have a chance of getting a draw, plus they are desperate for points following this week's managerial saga.

So it’s boring boring Chelsea for me. I can’t see Harry Redknapp’s Portsmouth getting a point at Stamford Bridge this weekend.

Portsmouth missed out on signing Yakubu this week which could have changed my mind on backing them.

I hope former David Nugent, who was to be leaving Portsmouth after only a month, doesn't spoil my weekend by proving his doubters wrong and getting a goal or two!

I will only bet 10% rather than my usual 15%, to offset the added risk from a strong Portsmouth side. They usually get a few good results away from home each season and finished high up the table last year.

£10.39 on a Chelsea home win.

Monday, 20 August 2007

Week 2: Opportunities Missed!

Last weekend virtually every prediction I made came true. Unfortunately I chose not to put any money on any of them.

The Manchester derby and Liverpool v Chelsea proved to be bad choices with City winning and the others playing out a draw, and the Tottenham match finished 4-0 to Spurs, after I said that they would probably thump Derby.

Another match which I considered, Rangers v Falkirk also proved to be very one sided - Rangers won 7-2!

Oh well.

At least I didn't lose anything!

Balance... still the same: £103.90

Thursday, 16 August 2007

Week 2: Too tough to call

No obvious mid week fixtures and a poor set of matches for the weekend leave me considering not making any bets at all.

Liverpool and Chelsea play each other, Arsenal are away at Blackburn and Manchester Utd take on City in the Manchester derby.

This only leaves Tottenham, who play Derby County, as a team for me to back. I usually don’t have faith in Spurs, however after 2 early defeats they desperately need a good performance in front of their home fans to get their season up and running.

I expect them to beat Derby but the rules I set out at the beginning state that I can’t bet on a team with poor form even if it is this early in the season.

In Scotland, the fixtures are slightly better with Hearts playing Gretna and Rangers v Falkirk, however neither are good enough to risk a bet.

I’m going to have to wait until next week to have another flutter.

Monday, 13 August 2007

Week 1: Results

Woohoo! - A great start to the season and a winning start to the project!

Last week’s bet took a lot of thinking about, but luckily I chose to put my money on Chelsea rather than Man Utd, as the current champions only managed a draw at home to Reading.

I was shocked to see Birmingham take the lead at Stamford Bridge but goals from Pizzaro, Malouda and Essien were enough to give Chelsea the 3 points.

I got an odds ratio slightly better than 1/4 for a Chelsea win and so got £3.90 on my bet of £15.

New balance £103.90

Thursday, 9 August 2007

Week 1: Premiership Season Begins

Balance: £100

I’m getting nervous now as I look at the first set of fixtures. I know that if I get a match wrong this early, it will have a big affect on my earnings overall. Losing money early will take a lot of time to win back.

Ideally I wouldn’t bet on the first round of matches, as I’d like some time to see which teams are strongest this year.

However, there are 3 matches that look promising in week 1. With 3 to choose from, and as I want to get the season underway, I will definitely put a bet on this week.

The first is Arsenal versus Fulham at the Emirates on Sunday. Even after the sale of Thierry Henry, Arsenal still have a strong side and should overcome Fulham with ease.

Arsenal won as many matches as Chelsea last season and Fulham managed only 1 win away from home. However, it may take a while for Da Silva and Van Persie to get used to each other.

Chelsea didn’t lose at home at all last year but drew 7 matches, they will be looking for a decent start to the campaign to show Man Utd that they intend to win the title back. This makes it a very tough match for Birmingham as it is their first match back in the premiership.

Looking at the away side, Birmingham had a poor defence when they were relegated 2 seasons ago, and now that they are without Matthew Upson, I will assume it has not improved. I can’t see them surprising Chelsea here.

The third match to consider is Man Utd v Reading – also on Sunday. Reading lost 9 matches away from home last year which is not particularly good, however they did prove to be tricky opponents, causing a few some surprises and eventually finishing 8th.

I think Reading have the determination to possibly get a draw at Old Trafford and Arsenal may take a little while to get used to not having Henry.

So, on that basis I’ll bet £15 on Chelsea to beat Birmingham and stick with only 1 match on the opening weekend.

Fingers crossed.

Tuesday, 24 July 2007

Initial Outlay

If this project is successful, I want to make a decent return. However, if it all goes wrong, I don’t want to be in danger of losing my house.

I have decided that £100 is a good starting point as I can afford it and the earnings and profit will be easily to calculate.

Monday, 16 July 2007

How I will make the bets

Each bet will be 'to win'. So if the team I choses loses or if the match is a draw, I lose my stake.

I expect most of the bets will be made online with the tax pre-paid, so I should know the amount I will win as soon as I make the bet.

I will try to shop around for the best odds, but ultimately I will stick to the betting sites that I find easiest to use.

Tuesday, 10 July 2007

The Rules

Last year I bet some very small amounts on a few matches but eventually finished the year with less money. However, it helped me prepare my rules for this year.

Hopefully, if I follow these rules closer I will be more successful.

The rules which I have created are:
  1. Only bet on home teams
  2. Only bet on home teams who usually win at home
  3. Only bet on matches where the away team is usually poor away from home
  4. Don't bet on home teams who may be ‘resting’ players for upcoming matches
  5. Only bet on matches which I have a good knowledge of the teams and the league
  6. Bet around 10% of my account total on each chosen match
  7. Try not to bet on more than 2 matches in a weekend
Hopefully, the rules will ensure that I win virtually every time. But, as the bookmakers know this too, I am going to get very poor odds.

Also, with my 10% rule, if I get a few poor results I may get into trouble very quickly.

Monday, 9 July 2007


Once my debts from University were paid off I began paying into a Mini-Cash ISA as it gives a decent rate of interest (5%) and the returns are tax free.

However, 5% per year does not seem like a very good return to me, so I started to look at other ways to increase my return.

Betting on football matches would seem to be a much worse idea than keeping my money safe with a bank, however the returns are larger, if you get the predictions right!

So the ideal situation would be to get a better return than an ISA while only betting on matches which you can be certain of the outcome.

Of course, you cannot ever be certain of a football result, but this can be countered by betting on lots of matches getting them right almost all of the time.