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Why do Bookmakers’ Odds Not Always Fairly Assess the Balance of Power of Opponents

Bookmakers are a business in which it is extremely important to be able to correctly analyze the balance of forces of opponents both in each individual match and at the distance of the tournament if BC offers bets on outrights. The coefficients provided by leading bookmakers are considered by many fans as a mathematically calculated balance between opponents – albeit with the possibility of a sensation, but also considering numerous objective factors, including statistics, the current form of the participants, and motivation.

If you blindly believe the coefficients, a strategy emerges that should be profitable in the long run – you just have to always bet on the favorites. Let the sensations happen, and the underdogs will sometimes turn out to be toothy, but regular wins with quotes of at least 1.4-1.5 should generally lead to a plus. If this approach worked, BC would go bankrupt, but it does not work both because of the same sensational results and because the kefes do not always reflect the balance of power between the rivals.

Suppose you like to bet – download Melbet apk and cheer for your favorites. We will try to explain where the error in bookmaker coefficients comes from.

Your Opponent is Not a Bookmaker, But Another Player

For the bettor, it looks like he is placing a bet directly with the bookmaker, but in reality this is not entirely correct – the bookmaker does not risk his money. Instead, she brings together those who wish to place funds with others, and takes a certain percentage of the total bankroll for herself – as a rule, 5-10%. In other words, your winnings are financed from the losing bets of other clients of the office.

When you bet with a friend or acquaintance, you only have one opponent. You say that team A will win, but the opponent believes in team B. Whatever the disparity of forces, most likely, the winning amount will be fixed – conditionally, either you will win 100 hryvnias, or you will have to give them to an opponent who is more lucky.


During the game in the office, two or three people can bet against you – accordingly, if you win, you will take all their bets (except for the percentage in favor of the bookmaker). If it is the three of you who bet against one player who believes in sensationalism, then the funds bet by him will have to be divided among all, and the winnings will be small.

If the bookmaker wants to remain in the plus, he must take into account not only objective analytics, but also the balance of bets on opponents. The perfectly accurate ratio of the opponents’ forces is indicated on the coefficients only at the moment when the bookmaker has just issued a quotation, or if the users of the bookmaker completely agree with the calculations of analysts and bet absolutely proportionally to the existing coefficients.

What Will Happen if the Rates are Skewed in Favor of One of the Parties?

Let’s imagine that the conditional “ours” are playing against “not ours”. In terms of strength, the opponents are absolutely equal, the winner is not predictable, and a tie is removed for the sake of simplicity of calculations – let it be tennis or volleyball, where such a concept does not exist. Given that the bookmaker is counting on a certain percentage of the margin, the fair odds will look like 1.9 on each of the opponents.

But this is ours! If it is a local bookmaker that operates only within this country, it is natural that customers will massively bet on theirs – why not, if the victory is quite real. Given that no one will bet on the victory of the opponent with equal chances, a situation may arise in which the amount of bets on the home team is many times greater than the money bet on the opponents. This means that the bookmaker will not only not collect the commission, but will not even be able to pay the winnings to domestic fans at the expense of skeptics.

Anticipating such a development of events and taking into account that the coefficient of the already concluded pair cannot be changed, the bookmaker will immediately lower the quotation on “ours” in order to preserve the economic feasibility of the business. Due to this, with equal strength of opponents, understated kefs will look as if the home team is a clear favorite, and its imaginary “favoritism” will only increase, as long as fans continue to bet on their victory, instead of switching to more profitable markets, such as the exact score.


The international status of the bookmaker solves the problem only partially. In such a bookmaker’s office, there will be no situation when everyone bet on the same “ours”, but a bias can be created by neutral fans, and even one player who unexpectedly decided to bet a million on a game that is not of interest to the general public.

In the latter case, the administration will probably remove the match from the line altogether, because it will suspect the contractual nature of the meeting – how else to explain the abnormally high stake. If the opponents really conspired about the result, the whole essence of betting is broken – the work of the bookmaker’s analysts becomes meaningless. When the balance of the wagered money is skewed by several particularly large pairs, the bookmaker does not even have time to lower the coefficient in order to at least somehow remain in the plus. In addition, with a huge bankroll imbalance, it may turn out that the opponents are equal, and the odds consider one of the teams as an almost guaranteed favorite, so players will pass by such a pair and will not help to even things out.

That is why a reasonable advice for bettors is the need to objectively evaluate the balance of forces of opponents according to numerous criteria, which do not include bookmaker quotes. At the same time, an experienced player will definitely bet on an event that, judging by his own analysis and coefficient, is very underestimated by the bookmaker.