Is it better to bet on football matches you can watch live?


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Jan 17, 2015
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Is it better to bet on football matches you can watch live?


This is the million-dollar question for so many amateur sports bettors across the globe. With only so many hours in the day, it can be difficult to dedicate the time to sitting down and watching a full 90 minutes of a football match, let alone multiple football matches in a single day. Although the leading bookmakers typically provide live streams of leagues throughout Europe, North America and the Far East to their customers, the fact of the matter remains that it still takes time to sit down on your PC, laptop or smartphone to watch the game unfold.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at the benefits of betting on football matches with and without live pictures.

Betting in-play with a live stream​

If you are someone that enjoys betting on football matches that you can see with your own eyes, there are multiple benefits to sitting down and watching the game unfold:
  • Determine the tempo of the game
    If you are someone that likes to bet on the number of goals in a game, be it Over 2.5 goals or even Under 2.5 goals, the ability to watch the live stream of a match can help determine the tempo of a game. If the tempo is fast-paced and resembles something of an end-to-end basketball match, you might wish to avoid betting on the Unders markets or cash-out of your existing bet. Similarly, if the tempo resembles a snail pace, you may wish to avoid betting on the Overs markets or cash-out of an existing wager.​
  • Ascertain if attack-minded players are in form
    One of the keys to profitable football betting is about finding value in the markets to go for. Given the science behind generating pre-game football odds, the prices you get from most bookmakers are a fair reflection of the likelihood of a team winning or losing. However, by being able to watch the game unfold live, you can make value calls as to whether a team’s top scorer or creator is in good form. If not, the price of their team to win may be considered too short, in which case betting on the draw or the opposing team can be the value call.​
  • Take into consideration the condition of the pitch
    When you bet on a live match that you can stream, it’s possible to get a feel for the match conditions, including the weather and the pitch. If the pitch is heavy with rain, it is likely to be less conducive to goals, with the ball harder to be moved through the midfield and in behind defences. Although live game data can notify you of a heavy or wet pitch, it’s still important to be able to see the way the ball runs with your own eyes.​
  • Discover if both teams want to try and win the match
    The ability to watch the live stream of a game is also useful to ascertain the motivation of both teams to try and win the contest. It could be a dead rubber game between two mid-table sides. In which case, neither side may bust a gut to carve out goalscoring opportunities. Either way, it’s useful to see which side is most motivated to score and win the game.​
  • Pinpoint one-on-one battles that players appear to be winning
    You may decide to watch a match between two evenly contested teams, which makes the draw price look good value in the Match Odds market. However, by watching the live match stream, it’s possible to pinpoint areas of the pitch where key one-on-one battles are being won. For example, a form striker may appear to be getting the better of his marker, standing a great chance of scoring and helping his team to win. It’s all useful information that can help you find value in the markets.​

Betting in-play based on live game data​


If you are someone that doesn’t have the time to dedicate to watching football matches in full, there are many benefits to placing bets on football based purely on live game data. The leading sportsbooks employ ‘data journalists’ to travel to games on a self-employed basis and record the blow-by-blow action that can be relayed and displayed on-screen to bettors:

  • Ability to focus on scaling up your sports betting
    By not committing yourself to watching and betting on one single football match, it’s possible to scale up your football betting. Using live game statistics, it’s possible to have multiple bets on multiple games on the go. Although this can increase your chances of finding a losing bet, it can also widen the net in finding more winning bets too.
  • Bet based on the raw data rather than your pre-game knowledge
    Some football bettors find it difficult to not bet with their head or heart. Bettors that have an encyclopaedic knowledge of a league or team may find it difficult to bet against a strong team, even if the raw in-game data suggests they are the inferior side. Those who bet using in-game statistics are less likely to be hung-up on preconceptions and can therefore seek out betting opportunities with positive expected value.
  • Easier to pinpoint underperforming favourites and overperforming underdogs
    If you focus your football bets based on live game data, it’s easier to highlight underperforming and overperforming teams. The possession statistics and shots on and off target statistics can help to demonstrate teams that are on top and those with their backs to the wall. If you see a pre-game underdog that’s dominating the ball and having attempts at goal, it may be worthwhile taking your chances and betting on the underdog.
  • Set up notifications for goals and in-game action
    By betting on football using in-play game data alone, you don’t need to be sat by your computer or smartphone for the full 90 minutes. With most bookmakers, it’s possible to set up goal notifications that allow you to make cash-out decisions on in-play wagers when the goals fly in. You can also set up notifications for things like red cards, which can also change the course of a match.
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