Top 5 Football Betting Books of all Time – Think About the Game a Different Way to Improve Your Results

Top 5 Football Betting Books of all Time

The world of football is an ever-changing beast. Not only have the rules been consistently tweaked since the early days - be that via the change to the offside rule, or the introduction of VAR and the increase in the number of substitutions in more recent times – but the manner in which the game is played and analysed has also become increasingly intricate over the years.

Any change in tactics or analytical approach has a knock-on effect on football betting, as punters attempt to interpret the data in the never-ending quest to gain an edge over the bookmakers. All of this creates an interesting field of study for football fans and punters, and one with almost endless avenues to pursue. For those seeking insight into the evolving world of football betting, a little knowledge can go a long way, leading to an explosion in the market for football betting books.

There are now hundreds of football betting books available, ranging from the great to the not-so-good. Here at, we help you to sort the wheat from the chaff by highlighting our top 5 books in the genre (in no particular order) – all of which are well worth your time and a place on your shelf.

The Definitive Guide to Betting on Football by Kevin Pullein

Part of the excellent Racing Post Expert Series - which includes equally worthwhile instalments on Horse Racing, Poker, Betting Exchanges, and General Sports Betting - this Football Specific tome is brought to you by one of the papers leading football writers. Renowned for his detailed statistical analysis, Kevin Pullein leaves no stone unturned in his pursuit of value and is never afraid to think outside the box. Whilst heavy on stats, the information is presented in an accessible manner and will be of value to both casual and seasoned punters. Covering everything from second-half betting and first goalscorers, to spread betting and betting exchanges, the book eloquently explains the theory, before detailing how the findings may be implemented in practice. Overall, this is an excellent choice for those seeking a football betting book which touches on all bases.

Inverting The Pyramid by Jonathan Wilson

Author Jonathan Wilson is a prolific footballing writer, with regular columns in the Guardian, Sports Illustrated, and World Soccer, in addition to an impressive selection of books, and, in our opinion, this is his masterwork. Subtitled “The History Of Football Tactics”, this meticulously researched work does just what it says on the tin, in charting the changing strategies and formations which have revolutionised the game over time, from the gung-ho tactics of the early years to the high-intensity, high-pressing style employed so successfully in the modern era. A deeper understanding of formations and the thinking behind coaching decisions can only help your analysis when weighing up potential bets, and this book does it best – particularly in the updated tenth-anniversary edition.

The Numbers Game by Chris Anderson and David Sally

Our pick for looking at football from a different angle is this enthralling book which promises to change the way in which you watch the beautiful game. At the very least, over the course of 12 illuminating chapters, The Numbers Game will answer many footballing questions that you likely wouldn’t have thought to ask. Deep in statistical data and theories, the book sheds light on the role of money in the game and illustrates how and why many players are worth way more to the performance of a side than may initially be apparent. For anyone wishing to think more deeply about the game - and those who regularly bet on football - this is a must-read release.

The Expected Goals Philosophy by James Tippett

Once no more than just another football statistic, Expected Goals, or xG as it has come to be known, has grown to become one of the most talked about football stats on the planet – regularly featuring as part of the analysis roundup of many of the top broadcasters, and in newspapers across the land. For those wondering what it is all about, this book explains all - from the origins of the stat to the various factors involved in its calculation and much more. Considering xG is now one of the go-to stats for professional football punters and scouts within football clubs, those unfamiliar with the metric will be doing themselves a favour by reading this richly detailed yet accessible book.

Football Hackers: The Science and Art of a Data Revolution by Christoph Biermann

Sticking to the theme of data analysis in the modern game, this insightful tome from Christoph Bierman is well worth adding to your collection. Calling on his experience of mixing with top coaches, managers, player scouts, football scientists and psychologists based at a selection of clubs from across Europe, Bierman lifts the lid on the thought processes and techniques behind player analysis and the factors in play when attempting to build a successful team. With a seemingly ever-widening gulf between the richest clubs on the planet and the rest, the smaller sides must call on increasingly innovative techniques in order to keep pace - a difficult, but not impossible, task. The Premier League and other top European divisions have been littered with seemingly overperforming sides in recent seasons, and this book goes a long way towards illustrating the ways in which many of these outfits have achieved such success.

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