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barcelona celebrate goal

How Betting Against La Liga Giants Barcelona & Real Madrid Can Offer Good Value

Often referred to as the best league in the world, although that might create some debate amongst fans of other leading European leagues, there’s no doubting the Spanish league offers plenty of passion and excitement.

La Liga is the home of Barcelona and Real Madrid – two of the wealthiest clubs in football and blessed with some of the best players around – with no game on the planet touching the international popularity of their iconic ‘El Clásico’ encounters each season. There are also the ‘Gran Derbi’ duels between Sevilla and Real Betis, not to mention a host of other mouth-watering national and regional rivalries amongst teams in the Spanish elite.

The Big Two in Spain

Midway into the 2019-20 campaign and with 19 games of the season now played by all the competing teams, as of 8th January, Barcelona are 8/15 outright La Liga betting favourites at Betway, with Real Madrid not far behind at 13/8 odds. Although both teams endured a somewhat shaky start to the season, they have since recovered and look set to dominate the title race once again.

While the charge for La Liga supremacy is looking like a foregone conclusion between the usual suspects, as Barcelona and Real Madrid increasingly look to be the only genuine contenders once again, there’s still good value to be found by backing against the two giants of Spanish football in the match result markets.

Why? Because both have struggled away from home and whatever kind of football betting system you prefer, there’s no substitute for competition knowledge. Sometimes a little research can go a long way, especially when looking for good value betting options in La Liga.

Backing the Underdogs in La Liga

Barcelona have made the Camp Nou an authentic fortress this season, scoring four or five goals in all but two matches. They beat Villarreal by a narrow 2-1 margin back in September, while the only time the side managed by Ernesto Valverde have dropped points at home was in El Clasico, when visiting Real Madrid held firm for a 0-0 draw.

Backing wins at home for Barcelona obviously doesn’t offer much value, given the shorter odds because they’re such strong favourites. However, the Blaugrana outfit have been decidedly dodgy on the road this season, struggling to get points away from home. At the midway point of the season and having played 10 away games, Barca had lost 3 and drawn 3, managing just 4 wins as the visiting side.

This makes Barcelona good value to bet against as the visitors this season, especially given two of their most frustrating away results have been against newly-promoted sides. Drawing 2-2 at Osasuna proved frustrating, although losing 2-0 against Granada in the following game proved even more of a shock for even the most successful football betting experts, given the winning side also have the lowest budget of any La Liga side this season.

Likewise, the form of Real Madrid away from home has been far from ideal for manager Zinedine Zidane. Just like their eternal rivals Barcelona, they remained unbeaten at home during the first half of the campaign. However, anyone carefully following the football statistics will note that away from home, some of the smartest betting tipsters and strategists around may be looking to the underdogs against Real Madrid, with good value odds for upsets.

On the road and having played 10 games as the visiting side, as the fixture statistics at show, although Real Madrid won 5, they also drew 4 and suffered a surprising 1-0 defeat at newly-promoted Mallorca. While they have fared better than Barcelona, this still makes Los Blancos a good value option to draw away from home, while also a consideration for 1X (home win or draw) bets when they’re the visiting side.

While the league table shows that Real Madrid and Barcelona are gradually extending their lead at the top of La Liga, both sides will inevitably stumble during the second half of the campaign in Spain. For that reason, it’s definitely worth paying extra-special attention to how they fare in away games, as that could ultimately prove the difference between the two sides in deciding the title.


Given the high-value odds of backing Real Madrid and Barcelona to lose can potentially bring good returns, clearly, it goes without saying that it’s always worth checking their form and team news ahead of games. Both sides have endured periods this season when key players have been absent through injury, which isn’t always reflected by their match odds. That’s something to keep an eye on as an opportunity when looking for value bets.

Elsewhere, it’s often the case that compared to the shorter odds being offered in many Premier League matches, the higher odds available in various La Liga markets can often present better value overall, and especially when they’re games that don’t involve the big teams. Follow the form and statistics of each team, look for trends in their performance and before long, you’ll spot some great value bets to be had in La Liga games.





scam alert

Betting Scams – What to Look For and How to Avoid Them

Unfortunately, there are many criminals out there who masquerade as legitimate gambling firms with the intention of stealing your money.

There are some tell-tale signs that can warn you if a site might be dodgy, so it is worth checking these before you provide a site with any personal details or money. Here we will look at some of the more prevalent scams out there, including Ponzi-type betting scams, pyramid schemes, fixed match betting scams, crypto scams, software scams and finally some betting coups where the bookmakers are the losers.


Ponzi Betting Scams

Ponzi betting scams are all too common, but once caught, justice tends to be swift and severe. Ponzi scams are named after the supposed originator, Charles Ponzi, or to give him his full name Carlo Pietro Giovanni Guglielmo Tebaldo Ponzi. Such scams rely on paying old investors using funds deposited by new investors. Usually impossibly high returns are offered, encouraging ever-increasing numbers of new investors.

Ponzi betting scams frequently involve betting syndicates. Peter Plimley’s scam is typical of most of them. In 2017 he convinced his victims that he had an almost foolproof scheme for betting on money markets. Although he was losing massive amounts, he was paying investors with money from new clients. In total he embezzled nearly £230,000 including the life savings of several friends and family members.

In a similar scheme, in 2014 Nicholas Peter Ford set up a spread betting syndicate and proceeded to take £1.3 million from investors but paying out just £240,000. As is typical with such scams, some investors trusted him with their life savings only to end up with nothing in return. He was sentenced to five years and four months in prison.

Ipswich-based gambler Darren Hudson-Wood was convicted of 13 counts of fraud in 2017 after running a “gambling pots” scheme whereby people would put in money and he would bet for them, telling them profits were “guaranteed.” However, after losing a large portion of their funds, Hudson-Wood failed to reveal to customers his losing bets but instead pretended he had been winning. In the end he was declared bankrupt in 2014 whilst owing his customers £30,000. He was given a 22-month suspended jail sentence after admitting the 13 charges of fraud made against him. 

More recently, in 2019, 5,000 members of the Layezy Racing betting syndicate discovered they were victims of a Ponzi scheme. The syndicate was run by Mike Stanley, a retired police officer. Some victims began to suspect a Ponzi scheme, and Sports Mail launched an investigation. In response to this, Stanley immediately filed for bankruptcy, leaving a debt estimated by administrators to be as much as £70 million. Apparently, Stanley hadn’t placed a bet in years and lived entirely on the income provided by his investors, some of whom lost their life savings.


Fixed Match Scams

While there is plenty of evidence that there are fixed matches, a common scam often circulated via social media is an offer of information on fixed matches that you can purchase for a small investment, typically £100 to £200. The aim is to get you to pay for useless or non-existent information. Perhaps surprisingly, many people are taken in by this, handing the scammers significant amounts of money.

While a proportion of those punters will lose their bet, at least a third will win and believe that they were given accurate information. These will be contacted again, with another offer usually costing more money than the first.

In one variant of the scam, the scammers will only request the fee after the bet has been won. This lulls a proportion of their victims into false security. Those for whom the bet work will be instantly hooked and pay for the next prediction.

Always ignore such fixed match offers. Take it from us they are all scams. Naturally, there are fixed matches, but nobody is going to tell you about them even for a few hundred pounds.


One-Page Betting Sites

This is something we see quite often and is an easy trap for many punters to fall into. A glossy one-page website will go up advertising a new tipster or betting system. The page will make all sorts of outrageous claims about how much money the system has made, often with pictures of betting slips showing wins of tens or even hundreds of thousands of pounds. 

There will probably be stories on the page of how an “ordinary guy” was stuck in some job they didn’t like earning very little money until they discovered a “secret system” that made them loads of money and they are now living the life they always dreamed of. Alternatively the story will be about a “computer genius” who has created some super-smart software that automatically finds winners and makes them thousands of pounds profit a day. Normally there are no results published on the website or any kind of clue as to who the people behind the system are.  

The reality of these sites of course is that they are all nonsense and completely made up. It is all just clever marketing aimed at dragging people in, preying on their gullibility and hopes that something like this may actually exist. 

Let’s face it though, if a system could make £100,000+ plus per year, why would someone sell it for £30 (which is often the cost of the services advertised on these sites)? They would obviously just keep it to themselves and continue making money from it.

Invariably these one-page sales sites disappear after a month or two, to be followed by another similar-looking site under a different name popping up not long after. Digging into them a little you will find many of them based out of Asia under shell companies and the like. 

So we would always advise people to look for full results published on a betting website, preferably that have been independently verified at a review site like this. Be very suspicious of a one-page betting site making outrageous claims of the amazing results it has achieved with supposed “proof” of betting slips – these can be easily faked.

As with all these things, the maxim “if it looks too good to be true, it probably is” should always be used. 


Dodgy Twitter and Facebook Tipsters

With social media becoming such a focal point of many people’s lives these days, it is perhaps not surprising that many tipsters and traders are now found on social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook.

Sadly however, the truth is that the vast majority of these services are either outright scams or of dubious quality. They will often post screenshots of their Betfair P/L account or their bookies betslips – all showing massive wins of course and never any losses. These are usually accompanied by lots of expressive “booms!” and emojis and supposed happy followers. The screenshots and followers can easily be faked though and even if they are not, they could have lost as much, if not more, the day before and not shown you. Or they could have two accounts, placing alternative bets meaning at least one will show a profit.

There are many ways they can manipulate things but ultimately if they don’t how a full betting record that has been independently verified, you should treat the service with extreme skepticism. You should always ask to see a full history of their results, not just the winners. If they refuse to do that then it is very likely a scam. 

It is worth being equally skeptical of social media accounts claiming to be brilliant Betfair traders, which there are many of these days. In our experience successful Betfair traders are extremely rare and don’t tend to go bragging about it on social media if they are. 

Beware also of YouTube scammers. There are quite a few videos around these days claiming they have some amazing betting/trading system that enables them to make a regular daily profit. The marketing behind these is often quite slick and usually tempts you into purchasing a very expensive trading course where you can learn their “secrets.” In our experience most of these courses are just fluff with very little actual value, just containing well-worn strategies such as lay the draw or over/under trading and will leave you feeling decidedly cold.  


Crypto Scams

Although this article is focused mainly on betting scams, it is worth giving a quick mention to cryptocurrency scams, partly because there have been so many of them over the last few years. In fact there have been estimates that over 90% of crypto start-ups were either scams or are no longer active. 

The bottom has completely fallen out of the crypto market over the last couple of years, no doubt as a direct result of the failure of so many cryptocurrency projects which has put people off investing any more money in the sector. 

However, there are still a few floating around and they typically offer to make some ridiculous amount like 1% profit per day. This is simply not possible to sustain and is a sure sign of a ponzi-style scam. Avoid these at all costs. 

There are also quite a few crypto scams involving gold, promising that their coin is tied to actual gold and therefore has real value. Most of these are outright scams or if not are very risky investments.  

Finally there are cryptocurrency mining schemes, which were all the rage back in 2016-2017 but have largely died a death thankfully. There are still a few around though and again these should be avoided. We have written elsewhere about why mining is fundamentally flawed and if you really want to be involved with a new coin it is better to just buy and hold it rather than to mine the token. 


Pyramid Schemes

Pyramid schemes are a controversial topic because they are not always scams, but can point towards one if there is no underlying value in a service. 

Typically pyramid schemes involve what is called “multi-level marketing” or MLM for short, which means that if one person recommends a product to their friends, they get a commission if someone signs up through them. Then if someone signs up from one of those people, the original referrer gets another commission and so on. These can often go down five, six or even ten levels, meaning someone at the top of the pyramid can be making a very substantial income from all the referrers under them. 

You may already spot the problem with something like this – how can the scheme afford to pay out so many people on all these levels of commission? Unless there is genuine value in the product and service being offered and all the commission can clearly be accounted for, then it is big warning signal. 

The other issue with pyramid schemes is that they can proliferate very quickly and their reach greatly outweigh the quality of the actual service or product being offered. They can spread like wildfire before burning out very quickly and going under. 

So we would advise that if you do see a pyramid scheme, look carefully at whether there is any intrinsic value in the product and how they will be covering all the commission payments to be made under the scheme. 


Betting Software Scams

The rise of Artificial Intelligence may well change the landscape of sports betting. After all computers can now beat professional poker players and bookmakers use reasonably sophisticated software and data sets to determine their initial odds. There is also evidence that some researchers have achieved a high degree of accuracy, predicting the outcome of horse races using neural networks and machine learning. Over ten races investigators made profits of between 30% and 50%.

However, people advertising software race predictors for a small fee are unlikely to have access to the kind of supercomputers needed for deep learning. Avoid them, they are a scam.



So that is a list of the main forms of betting scams. It is by no means exhaustive as there are so many ways scammers will try to part you from your hard-earned cash, but the main themes tend to be the same. Most of them use FOMO – or “fear of missing out” – to lure you into thinking you have to invest quickly or you may miss out. A lot of slick marketing is used and people’s fear and greed is preyed upon. 

Ultimately you should always treat any claims with a healthy skepticism and look for independent proof of their results. Are their claims realistic? Normally a return on investment of 20-30% is the best anyone can realistically achieve in the long run and doubling or trebling a starting bank in a year is about the maximum achievable.

If someone is claiming to turn £1,000 into £100,000 or to have a “secret system” that has a found a “loophole” that cannot lose, then most probably it is total BS. 

As we say, always bear in mind the maxim “if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.” 


Betting coups

Now let’s take a look at the other side of the coin, where people have managed to – legitimately – put one over on the bookies and pull off some amazing betting coups. 

Yellow Sam

It isn’t always Joe Public who is the victim of a betting scam. Often it is the bookmakers who feel the pain. Perhaps the most famous betting soup, the so-called Yellow Sam coup, made around £300,000 on a single race.

Barney Curley entered his horse Yellow Sam in a small provincial Irish horse race at Bellewstown. In the days that pre-date mobile phones, the racecourse was serviced by just one public phone. To guarantee the horse began at generous odds, he had run it in several previous races where it was unsuited to the conditions and failed badly. On the day of the race, Curley’s agents were sent to many different bookmakers where they bet between £50 and £300 on the horse within the last few minutes before the start.  In total they placed around £15,000. While this aroused some suspicions, the bookmakers were unable to contact the racecourse at Bellewstown as the only phone, a public payphone was continually occupied by another of Curley’s conspirators apparently in conversation with his dying aunt. Thus, the adds on Yellow Sam remained at 20/1. Had the bookmakers got through, the odds would have been slashed. Needless to say, Yellow Sam won at preposterously high odds, handing Curley a £300,000 profit which at today’s prices would be £1.4 million.

D Four Dave

In a similar coup, the small racecourse at Kilbeggan in Ireland where the horse D Four Dave won easily at 5/1 though earlier in the day it had been priced at 15/1. Douglas Taylor, and entrepreneur, had recruited 200 assistants and provided them with an alarm watch and instructions then shipped them to numerous bookmakers throughout Kildare and Dublin. They were instructed to wait for the alarm, set to go off a few minutes before the start of the race, then hand in a completed betting slip and the £200 bet. They were then told to return to their handler and get paid for their troubles. Although some of the recruits inadvertently gave the game away, even handing their written instructions to the teller, Taylor still made a handsome profit. Paddy Power alone lost £50,000.





quentin franks racing

Get a FREE Trial of Our Number One Horse Racing Tipster

We’ve been running Honest Betting Reviews for over four years now (how time flies eh!) and in that time there has been one horse racing tipster who has stood out above the rest.

Our number one recommended horse racing tipster has been producing fantastic results since we first reviewed his service over four years ago.

The tipster in question is called Quentin Franks Racing and since we’ve been following his tips, he’s made an astonishing 1,200 points profit.

That’s over £12,000 profit to £10 stakes or £30,000 profit to £25 stakes.

All at a return on investment of over 18% and making a profit at Betfair SP.

Now the really great news is you can get a completely FREE trial of Quentin’s tips for 10 days now.

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This trial offer is only around for a limited time though, so don’t miss out.

Sign up for a FREE trial here and see why this is our number one recommended horse racing tipster.





racing intelligence pic

Special Offer Exclusive to HBR Members

We have been reviewing horse racing service Racing Intelligence for over four months now and the results have been outstanding.

So far for our trial they are 167 points up at advised prices and 84 points up at Betfair SP.

Those are some of the best results I’ve seen in a live trial for some time and to celebrate the excellent results, the chap who manages the service – Matthew Walton – has a very special message just for members of Honest Betting Reviews like you.

Listen to this special message just for HBR members here.

This isn’t like your typical tipster service. It’s actually based on advice from an “inside man” at one of the top bookmakers who gets access to where the smart money is being placed.

And that info certainly seems extremely valuable when you look at the results achieved so far!

In addition to the results achieved during our trial, the service has been proofed elsewhere and has made 842 points profit overall at advised prices or 464 points profit at BSP if betting win and place (each-way).

Or if betting win only then the profits are an incredible 1,160 points made at advised prices and 672 points made at Betfair SP.

This year nine out of ten months have been profitable, an excellent level of consistency.

Listen to the special message from Matthew Walton just for you.





football trading pic

Football Trading – How to Profit

Mastering football trading is one of the hardest skills possible. Most people who try football trading tend to dabble in well-known strategies such as laying the draw or trading the over/under markets and at first it can seem easy, but then the tough reality sets in when results go against them or something unexpected happens and the losses mount up. 

To trade the football markets successfully takes a great deal of skill, research and planning. It takes rigid discipline and sticking to a gameplan no matter what and very few do it successfully. 

There are some useful tools out there to help with trading football so you don’t have to just “go it alone” and try and figure it all out for yourself. We’ll take a look at some of the tools you can use as well as analyse the pitfalls to avoid and how you can become a profitable football trader.


Football Trading – The Basics

Just like any other form of trading, with football trading you are trying to back high and lay low to guarantee yourself a profit whatever happens. You are not interested in the ultimate result of a match, just the price swings that occur in it. 

To trade you will need to join an exchange like Betfair or Smarkets, both of which have a wide variety of markets to trade. Some of the most popular markets to trade include:-

  • – Match Odds (1×2)
  • – Over/under 1.5/2.5/3.5 goals
  • – Correct Score
  • – Half Time result
  • – Half Time score
  • – Both Teams to Score

It is best to concentrate on the markets with most liquidity if you are going to trade because you don’t want to risk your bets not being matched or give up value by taking prices that are worse than the odds should be. 

Obviously the factors that most affect the odds during a football match are:-

  • – Goals
  • – Red cards
  • – Time decay

Essentially having so few variables makes football quite a predictable sport to trade. Prices will move in quite a steady way until there is a goal when they will change dramatically. 

Knowing how prices will move as a result of a particular event is crucial to your trading. You want to know exactly what the potential profit and loss will be from a particular trade and to work out the risk/reward on that basis. 

For example, if you are laying the draw between two fairly evenly-matched teams and the odds of the draw are 3.5 to start off with and there is a goal in the first half, the odds will normally move to around 4.5. 

Make sure you study the markets first and understand how prices will move before you start trading the football markets.


Where to Start From – Study the Stats

If you are going to trade football, a good point to start from is to study the stats. Certain leagues and teams have a tendency to follow familiar patterns which can make them good for trading. 

Websites such as flashscores and soccerstats have good stats databases for you to use as a basis for your trading. 

If you are going to be trading the unders early on in a match for example, it would be a good idea to look at teams who have a record of keeping things tight early on and not seeing too many goals. 

Or if you were looking to lay the draw at HT it might be an idea to focus on teams who score a lot their goals in the second half and therefore have a strong chance of breaking the deadlock. 

Spending even a short amount of time before a game studying the teams and their recent form can really pay dividends if you are looking to trade on the football. 


Best Trading Tools and Software

These days there are a number of top trading tools and packages that can really help with your trading and provide a path to profit. Here are the some of the best we have come across through our extensive testing and reviews:-

  • Goal Profits – a multi-award winning trading service, Goal Profits combines trading strategies, guides on how to trade, stats, a chat room where you can follow along with professional traders, daily trade selections and top customer support together in one excellent package. It was voted Best Football System by our members in our annual awards and has won numerous other accolades. A hugely popular service and if you are looking to take your football trading seriously then this is a good place to start. 
  • Trade on Sports – run by a team of professional traders, Trade on Sports is a service built on the foundation of a vast stats database that produces alerts you can follow via the messenger app Telegram. There are a few different alerts but the main one we followed in our live trial of the service was their HT Overs Bot, which made over £4,000 in our review. You can also make use of the stats yourself to create your own strategies and there is a lively chat community as well. One of the very best trading services we have come across. 
  • If you don’t have the time to spend hours in front of a screen trading football matches then there is an excellent alternative in the form of Auto Pro Trader. It is a platform that allows you to follow professional traders automatically, with their trades copied onto your Betfair account. So you can go about your day and do other things whilst the pros trade on your behalf, creating a passive income opportunity. 

So if you are looking to get into football trading, these are three quite different but equally useful services we have tried and tested ourselves and found to be of considerably benefit. 


Some Basic Strategies to Get Going With

If you are looking to “go it alone” however and have a go at trading yourself, here are some basic strategies you could use to get you going:-

Lay the Draw – possibly the best known of all trading strategies, this approach involves laying the draw at the start of a game and trading out at some stage during the match. There are different ways to trade this strategy and we have outlined our own thoughts on it here.

Over/Under trading – another popular trading method involves trading the over/under markets. One way to do this is to back under 2.5 goals before the game and then to trade out after 15-20 mins. If there hasn’t been a goal then you will often get a nice move down in the odds and a good profit. If there is a goal you will need to trade out for a loss, so it is best to focus on teams who don’t tend to score/concede early if following this strategy. Another approach is to hedge with for example laying under 3.5 goals, then if there is an early goal you will be in fairly neutral position but if there isn’t you can trade out the 2.5 position for profit and leave the 3.5 to run.

Lay the Draw at HT – a variant on laying the draw at HT, this strategy involves laying the draw in games that are drawing at half time. It reduces the risk as the draw price will be much lower at HT than at the start and will also provide more profit if there is a goal. You can also hedge to a certain extent by covering the correct score, although generally you will need a late goal to generate a profit if doing so. 


Conclusion – Go Against the Crowd to Beat the Market

Winning at football trading is not easy and if you are going to make long-term profits it pays to do your research, use the best tools available and remained disciplined at all times. 

It also pays to go against the crowd and develop your own way of trading that not everyone else is doing. Find a niche and work on perfecting it as a good approach to all forms of betting and trading.

Whatever strategies you use, good luck with your trading and please gamble responsibly. 









Bet Alchemist homepage

Profit OR Your Money Back!

One of our top recommended horse racing tipsters, the Bet Alchemist, is making a very special offer for the 2019/20 Jumps season.

This tipster won the accolade of “Best Horse Racing Tipster” last year as voted for by you, the members of Honest Betting Reviews.

Having passed a review on our site back in 2016 they have gone from strength to strength since then, having made 40 points profit this year and 900 points profit in total – that’s £9,000 profit to just £10 stakes.

The great news is they are offering a FULL MONEY BACK GUARANTEE on subscriptions to the service if they don’t make a profit over the jumps season.

Check out the offer here.

This offer is based on results starting at Cheltenham tomorrow through to the 4th May 2020 which is the last day of the Punchestown Festival.

When you consider they’ve made a profit during every jumps season since going live in 2011 it is understandable they’re confident of success this time too.

And they’re in top form following 12/1 & 18/1 winners at Ascot last Saturday.

So it’s a great time to join up with the jumps action getting going tomorrow at Cheltenham.

You can sign up here with a full money back guarantee for the 2019/20 jumps season.

betting profits celebration

How Much Money Can You Make Betting On Sports?

The question of how much money you can make from betting on sports is a tricky one. It is rather like asking “how long is a piece of string?” 

However, there are some fundamental aspects to betting on sports you should take into account when considering this question. In a best-case scenario for example, the top professional gamblers in the world make millions from their betting, so in theory if you reached their level you could become very wealthy from it. 

Most people however would never be able to risk as much money as the top professionals, so a more realistic approach is to look at how much you could make from a reasonable starting bank of say £1,000 (or $1,000). 

With techniques like matched betting, arbitrage and value betting or following some top tipsters, it is possible to make a healthy second income of a few hundred pounds or dollars per month. 

Let’s take a deeper dive into looking at how much money you can make from sports betting and exactly how to do it.


The Best Case Scenario – The Big Shots

If you are really, really good at gambling then there is the possibility to make a very large amount of money from it. The likes of Bill Benter and Alan Woods have reportedly made hundreds of millions of dollars from betting on the horses. They shared many similarities, both having an early fascination with the book Beat the Dealer, which applies statistical and mathematical probability to games of chance. Both also made their fortunes in Hong Kong, using computer models to extract extraordinary levels of profit from the racetracks there.  

Gambler Alan Woods made millions from the racetracks in Hong Kong.

Making such fortunes is a very rare thing of course and most people would simply not have the funds to bet at the level Benter and King did, wagering hundreds of thousands on a single race on a regular basis.

However, there are other successful gamblers who have made money from more realistic staking – notably the likes of Angus Loughran, Tony Ansell and Derek McGovern, who all reportedly made a good living from their betting activity. A word of warning though, Mr Loughran (also known as “Statto” from his days on Fantasy Football) was forced to declare bankruptcy a few years ago, so perhaps his gambling went through a rough patch at one stage.

Now of course there are a new breed of gamblers, those who make their living from the betting exchanges like Caan Berry, Kevin Haskell, Mark Iverson and many others. These individuals tend to trade the markets rather than gamble on them, but apparently make a very good income from doing so.   


Taking a Realistic Approach

Of course for most people the idea of giving up the day job and becoming a professional gambler is pretty remote and only a very small number of people have ever done so successfully. More realistically, if you are looking to supplement your income with some shrewd sports betting, how much could you plausibly expect to make?

Well, let’s have a look at some examples of some successful tipsters and systems and how much money you could expect to make from them given a certain starting bank.

Let’s say for example you started off with a £1,000 betting bank and decided to follow a top tipster. How much could you expect to make?

At the high end, if you had followed a tipster like Quentin Franks since he started tipping in 2014 and bet just £10 per point, your £1,000 bank would have turned into over £15,000 in just five years, which is no mean feat.  

Similarly if you had followed Russell Blair Racing since he commenced tipping in 2015 and bet at £10 per point, you would have made over £19,000 in just over four years. 

Of course, these are the very top tipsters so you cannot expect other tipsters will match those levels, or even that these two tipsters will necessarily continue at such an exceptional standard – although we hope they will! 

More sensibly we would expect a good tipster to double their betting bank over the course of a year, so be able to turn £1,000 into £2,000 over the course of 12 months. That would be a strong return on capital compared to most other forms of investing.  

Following a portfolio of tipsters is a way of managing risk.

If you have a big enough betting bank to follow a number of tipsters at the same time then you could make a decent income from their combined profits. Tipsters Empire for example have a “Portfolio Package” whereby you can subscribe to five tipsters at once for a big discount. Following all five tipsters has made over £8,000 to £10 stakes at the time of writing, which translates into a few hundreds per month in extra income. Following a portfolio approach also spreads the risk in case one tipster has a particularly bad run, it would hopefully be balanced out by the others. 


Compounding Your Profits

One way you can really accelerate your profits is to use compounding, which Albert Einstein called the “eighth wonder of the world.” 

The above examples are all using flat staking of just placing £10 per point, but if you were to stake a percentage of your bank on each occasion, you could actually grow your bank much more substantially. Betting 1% of your bank using the above examples of Quentin Franks and Russell Blair would have grown your bank even more significantly than just using flat stakes and could have generated over £50,000 profit over the same period. 

At some stage of course you would want to take out some of your profits, so in most cases you wouldn’t have just let things run for that whole period. Even taking out some profits from time to time however, the compounding model can be very powerful. 


Reducing Risks 

Matched betting is a great way to generate low-risk profits on a regular basis.

At the other end of the scale of course it is important to recognise that you could lose money from gambling. No matter how well a tipster or strategy has performed in the past, there is no guarantee they will continue doing so in the future. That is why it is essential to set aside a betting bank that you can afford to lose and recognise that if everything goes wrong, you could lose the entire lot. With proven tipsters it happens rarely but is a risk. 

If you want to take a lower risk approach then you could try matched betting and value betting. Matched betting through a package such as Profit Maximiser can generate a very good regular income, with some people making up to £20,000 per year from it for very little risk.

Unfortunately matched betting is only available to people in countries that allow free bets and bonuses, which at the moment is mainly restricted to the UK and Ireland. 

If you live elsewhere then value betting is a good alternative through software such as Each Way Sniper. It identifies value each-way bets with the bookies whereby the odds of the place part of the bet are higher than the actual chances of winning. Some bets will lose but over time and the course of hundreds of bets, it is as close to guaranteed profit as you can get and many people make £500-£1,000 per month from it, which is a great additional income.  

The problem with both matched betting and value betting is that ultimately you are likely to have your bookie accounts closed or restricted by doing them, so both are somewhat time-limited. However, there are steps you can take to keep your accounts open as long as possible and maintain those profits for a good period.   



You can certainly make a decent second income from betting by following a portfolio of top tipsters or doing matched betting and value betting. 

How much you can make depends on how much you have to start with, but even with as little as £1,000 you can turn that into a decent revenue stream of a few hundreds pounds a month through smart betting. 

Matched and value betting is the safest way of doing this, but are both time-limited as eventually your bookie accounts will be restricted. 

Following successful tipsters is another good option but does come with risk, so always make sure you set aside a sensible betting bank that you can afford to lose and be prepared to stay patient and recognise there will be losing runs. 

With the right mindset and strategy though it is possible to make some good money from betting, even if you never end up making millions like pro punters Bill Benter and Alan Woods.  







Betting on Brexit as “Super Saturday” Looms

So the news has just landed that UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has agreed a Brexit deal with the EU.

Attention now turns to the UK Parliament and what is being dubbed “Super Saturday” as MPs are asked to pass the deal.

Whatever your views on Brexit – and lots of people just seem fed up with it all at this stage! – the betting markets make for interesting viewing at the moment and there is the potential to make some profit trading the markets as events unfold. Let’s take a look at what’s happening at the moment and the betting markets on Brexit. 

Boris Johnson and the EU are obviously keen to see the deal be approved by Parliament and for the Brexit question to be finally settled. However, what chance is there that the deal will actually get through? The DUP have come out against the deal on the basis that it effectively sets Northern Ireland on a separate regulatory framework to the rest of the UK and could end up with added pressure for Irish reunification. 

Will the Deal Pass? How the Numbers Stack Up

There are currently 650 MPs in the House of Commons, but with Sinn Fein not taking their seats and the Speaker not voting, Boris Johnson needs about 319 votes to pass his deal. 

It is said he has around 259 votes already guaranteed, so that leaves about 60 more to get. Here are the various groups Johnson could potentially get those votes from:-


The group seen as most crucial to a deal has always been the DUP, the Northern Irish MPs who prop up the Tory government. They indicated this morning they would not support the deal. However, if large amounts of cash are thrown their way by Boris Johnson, it is possible they may change their minds. 


Last time there were 28 so-called “Spartans” of hard-core ERG members who voted against Theresa May’s deal every time it was brought forward. This time though most of them are expected to vote for Boris Johnson’s deal as he has removed the controversial “backstop” which ERG members objected to. It is predicted that only a handful of ERG members will vote against the deal this time, giving perhaps 23-25 extra votes to Johnson’s deal. 


Then you have the 21 ex-Tories who were expelled from the party for voting for the Benn Act to extend the Brexit deadline if a deal was not agreed by 19th October. Of those 21, at least 4 are expected to vote against the deal, leaving 17 others. Most of those 17 are expected to vote for the deal, although a few like Philip Hammond and David Gauke are still unknown.  

Opposition MPs

You also have 21 opposition MPs who have said they would consider voting for a deal, but at this stage it is very unclear how many of them actually will. Which way this group swings may determine the outcome. 


Finally there are five independents, four of whom voted for May’s deal so would be expected to vote for Johnson’s deal as well. The major question mark is over Jo Johnson, the Prime Minster’s brother, who resigned over Brexit but is still an unknown quantity at this stage.

Adding It All Up

So let’s add up those numbers, looking firstly at those either sure or likely to vote for the deal:-

  • – In the bag: 259
  • – Likely: 24 ERG members
  • – Likely: 14 ex-Tories
  • – Likely: 4 Independents

Total: 301

Next those whose position is unknown currently:

  • – 21 opposition MPs
  • – 3 ex-Tories
  • – Jo Johnson

Total: 25

Finally you have those currently expected to vote against the deal:

  • – 10 DUP
  • – 4 ERG members
  • – 4 ex-Tories

Total: 18

So in summary with those expected to vote for the deal, Johnson is still about 18 votes short of getting the support he needs. He needs to get either all the opposition MPs on board, or the DUP plus some opposition MPs.

The Betfair Odds on Brexit

Currently Betfair has the chances of a Meaningful Vote passing in 2019 at just over evens, around 2.1 – 2.2.

Given the numbers above those odds look a little optimistic, unless opposition MPs swing behind the deal – which looks unlikely unless the government guarantees workers’ rights and environmental protections. 

So this is not something we would back currently. You could even lay it as at least a trade to back later as the realisation emerges that passing a deal is unlikely.

At the same time, Betfair currently has the odds on the UK leaving on 31st October at 3.3 – which seems a contradiction to the market above. Unless of course the market is presuming the UK will need a short extension just to finalise the legislation and get it all done. The discrepancy in the two markets seems large though and could be worth trading one against the other as if a deal passes there will be every effort imaginable to get everything done by the end of October. 

Another possibility is that Johnson’s deal could fail and then the question is what happens next.

A no deal Brexit in 2019 is currently at 6.2 on Betfair, so the market seems to be taking at face value the idea that Johnson will comply with the Benn Act and request an extension if a deal is not secured on Saturday. However, he has constantly repeated that the UK will leave on 31st October “do or die” and has staked an awful lot on that outcome. It has also been suggested that a backup plan is in place to avoid having to request an extension.

At the same time, if just one EU member refuses an extension, it won’t be granted. And Jean-Claude Juncker has just ruled out an extension (although commentators have pointed out that he doesn’t have the authority to decide that and it is up to EU member states so shouldn’t be taken at face value).

In any event, overall the odds of a no-deal Brexit happening still seem on the high side at 6.2 so a small stake here with the option of trading out later could be considered. 

General Election Odds

There is likely to be a general election fairly soon and at the moment the odds look well out of step with the polling. Whilst the Tories enjoy big leads in the polls ranging from 5 to 15 points, with an average lead of about 8 points, they are still around 2.60 to win an outright majority on Betfair. 

The complicating factor is that the national polling is unlikely to work quite as simply as normal in the next election as the Tories are likely to be wiped out by the SNP in Scotland and suffer serious losses to the Lib Dems in the South-West of England and London, meaning they will have to make up ground in Labour’s heartlands in the midlands and North. 

At the moment we think given Jeremy Corbyn’s historically poor approval ratings and leave voters switching heavily to Boris Johnson from the Brexit party, this is looking increasingly likely and the 2.6 about a Tory majority looks like great value, as does the 1.35 about them winning most seats.

The only caveat is that a lot could happen between now and an election, so this would not be a market to be getting heavily involved in – at this stage anyway. 



So there you have it – our take on the current betting markets around Brexit. Things move at a rapid pace these days and a lot could happen on Saturday, so it’s best to stay on top of things and be ready to trade markets as they move.

Whatever happens it should be interesting viewing! 





matched betting

Is Matched Betting Safe?

Done correctly, matched betting is as safe as houses, but some things can go wrong if you don’t take care. We will look in detail at some potential pitfalls and how to stay safe. But first, a quick refresher as to what matched betting is all about.

What is matched betting?

Matched betting is a way of exploiting offers made by bookmakers such as free bets as sign-up bonuses and ongoing incentives by betting on both outcomes of an event. You are guaranteed to win, and it’s all 100% legal.

Here is a simple example. A bookmaker is offering a £25 free bet on a sporting event if you bet £25. You bet £25 on team A with the bookmaker and lay a bet on team A with a betting exchange (such as Betfair). The amount you lay will depend on the odds, but you should adjust your bet to return around £25 should team A lose.

Assume team A loses. You lose £25 with the bookmaker, but you gain close to £25 from Betfair. You are likely to lose a small amount of money including the Betfair commission, but you also gain a free £25 bet. If team A won, then your bet with the bookmaker would win, and you would also receive a free bet. You would, of course, have around a £25 loss on Betfair. So, whatever the outcome you have almost broken even and have a free £25 bet.

Now you repeat the process using your free bet with the bookmaker and matching it with a lay bet on the exchange. Whatever the outcome, you will have converted that free bet into profit.

Matched betting can be very rewarding when done right, with thousands of pounds of low-risk profit available.

There are some great services like Profit Maximiser which bring together all the offers and show you how to set them up with ease. During our live trial using Profit Maximiser we made £2,469 profit with very little risk, which is pretty much all you can ask for. 

So, what can go wrong?

You can keep doing that time after time using the hundreds of free bets offered by bookmakers. So, what could possibly go wrong? Why can’t you keep generating profit every week? Theoretically, you can. Some people claim to make a regular income of up to £600 a month using matched betting.  However, two things can go wrong: human error and getting gubbed.

Human error

Matched betting is reasonably complicated. If you don’t have a head for basic maths. Then perhaps it isn’t for you. But even if you are good with figures, things can go wrong. We can all lose concentration occasionally and make mistakes. For instance, getting a substantial lay wrong can be very expensive if you fail to fix it in time. The message is DON’T MAKE MISTAKES. Keep a careful track of your bets and lays, preferably documenting everything in a spreadsheet.

Account gubbing

Bookmakers don’t like matched betting and will try to stop matched betters in their tracks. Gubbing is having your account limited by the bookmaker. This might take the form of banning you from promotions such as free bets and limiting your maximum stake, often to a derisory amount. And the main reason why people get gubbed is the bookmaker suspects they are using matched betting.

But how do bookmakers know you are matched betting? Every punter’s account is monitored by the bookmaker using algorithms that probably know more about your betting habits than you know yourself. They know precisely how every kind of punter behaves, including matched betters. To avoid being flagged up as a matched better, you should disguise the fact by giving the impression you are a typical everyday punter. This means:

  • – Don’t bet exclusively on promotions. Mix your matched betting with ordinary bets. You can lay these at a betting exchange to protect your stake, so you won’t win or lose significant amounts, but you will disguise your real purpose.
  • – Don’t focus entirely on high-value bets that are significantly better than lay odds. Again, this is likely to flag you as a matched better.


If you take the precautions we have mentioned, matched betting really is as safe as houses, and there are guaranteed profits to be made. Just be careful and take your time. You will be amazed by how much risk-free money you can make.

And if you use a top service like Profit Maximiser you can make up to £500 per month tax free from matched betting. 






football goal

Expected Goals – Explained

While the term “expected goals” (xG) has entered the football lexicon over the past few years, the concept has been well established for much longer. Analysts and researchers have been using the metric to assess the performance of football teams since the early 1990s.

What exactly do we mean by xG?

So what exactly do we mean by xG? Fundamentally, it is a straightforward metric that relates the number of shots at goal with the number of goals scored. It applies to individual players and teams. It can be broken down into specific situations, such as xG for penalties, for corners, for open play, in fact, it can be broken down to even more granular basis such as distance from goal and shot angle.   

Essentially, xG can help us understand the game if we use it correctly. But as a tool, it has its limitations, for instance, used by itself it isn’t a reliable prediction of results. What it does provide is an indication of the probability that a specific shot will result in a goal.

The xG model

In fact, there are several different xG models, but we won’t go into their subtle differences here. What is fundamental to all of them is that the most critical parameters are the distance from goal and angle of the shot (though there are various definitions of these). Other important factors are free kicks, through balls, headers, corner kicks, time of game, and so forth. A complete xG analysis might well include many additional factors.  

Developing an xG model involves collecting a great deal of information over time and analysing it using various statistic methods to determine the xG for the multiple shots and field positions. For instance, we might want to assess the probability of a player who is 8 metres away from an open net, scoring a goal. The xG model assembled using 1,000 similar instances in which 800 goals were scored in similar circumstances might assign a probability of 0.8 that the player would score, but that would be unrealistic as many more factors need considering. How did he receive the ball? What were the weather conditions? How long had the player had the ball?

To put all those variables together, we need to use a method such as “logistic regression” to find a formula that takes account of all that information to compute a realistic probability of scoring a goal.

How useful is xG in football betting?

xG is a valuable way of assessing the current form of a team an individual player. But can it be used to improve our football betting strategies? Let’s look at what it can tell us:

  • – How well a team is performing compared to its usual form
  • – Individual player performances
  • – How well teams play from specific situations such as corner kicks
  • – The xG for both sides in a match

xG can help us put real numbers to these and increase our betting edge. It can also help with specialist markets such as corner kicks and over under markets. However, don’t expect that introducing xG into your betting strategy will yield instant results. You will only see the value over time. xG is a long term historical statistical measure and provides only a guide to future performance. Remember, many factors can influence the outcome of a game, so don’t put too much weight on xG without considering all the other factors also.

However, the more information you have, the more successful your betting is likely to be. The best way is to see if it works for you.

If you want to follow an established and successful football strategy however, check out this top betting system that has made over $100,000 from betting on the draw.