Can Data Predictions Perform Better than Expert Betting Predictions?



Punters approach betting in very different ways. Some will trust their knowledge and instinct, solely placing their bets based on that, while others will trust stats and percentages based on a variety of figures input into a system. You are likely to find winning and losing punters on both sides of the argument, so there isn’t really a right or wrong answer to the question, which approach is the best to take.

Expert Opinion vs Data Driven Predictions

If there is one big difference between these two then you can put it down to one thing, and that is emotion. When an expert makes an opinion on the outcome of a football game they are looking at the two teams taking part and forming an opinion on them. However, inside that opinion is emotion, including who we want to win, what has happened recently to sway our thinking and if any particular outcome favours our team.

None of this is used by data, there is no emotion, simply cold hard facts computed into a percentage probability of an outcome happening. These data predictions do not have a favourite team, and they didn’t watch a team play and be unlucky last week, they can only give predictions based on the fact and figures inputted into them.

The success of data predictions will be determined by the facts and figures they run off, and if you intend to use one of these for your sports betting, then you need to make sure the data is as good as it can possibly be.

Using Data Predictions in Sports Betting

If you find a data-driven prediction service that is offering a good percentage of winners then you can use this to your advantage when sports betting. You will need to find a good one to make a profit, as the bookmakers have their edge stacked against you when you bet with them.

For example, if you work out the odds on a football game as percentages, you will find that the total comes to 102-105%. This is the bookmaker edge on top of the odds giving you a higher number than 100%. To get value from your betting you need to not only have a successful data predictor that gives you winners but one that predicts well enough to be able to beat the bookmaker's margin and still make your betting profitable.

Data Prediction Betting Strategies

If you are going to use your data predictions in your betting then you need to come up with a betting strategy. There are two ways to do this, and only experimenting with your own data will show you which is the best way to go.

The first is to bet level stakes on the games that are thrown up as potential winners by your system. This means you will have the same money on each selection, regardless of the odds that are on offer. The second is to stake more or less on each selection depending on the available odds, if the odds are low and the probability of a win is high, you stake more, while those with big odds and a smaller chance of winning have lower stakes.