Okay, last time in BrokenTV Looks At How To Game The Bookmakers Out Of All Their Hardearned Money, we looked at World Cup Golden Boot odds offset against international goalscoring records. That gave us the following top five bets:
1) Neymar (Brazil) – 10/1, 0.64 goals per game
2) Didier Drogba (Ivory Coast) – 80/1, 0.64 goals per game
3) David Villa (Spain) – 40/1, 0.60 goals per game
4) Gonzalo Higuain (Argentina) – 20/1, 0.58 goals per game
5) Klaas Jan Huntelaar (Holland) – 66/1, 0.57 goals per game
6) Edin Dzeko (Bosnia) – 80/1, 0.57 goals per game
All promising enough – putting a month’s salary on Drogba would mean you can definitely just take the rest of the year off. Clearly. Except! For that goals-per-game ratio to mean anything, each player’s respective team kind of needs to be around play as many world cup matches as possible. And trading on Betfair at around 149/1 to win the tournament, Ivory Coast aren’t especially likely to be knocking around at the latter stages in Brazil.
So, we need to add in another measure of likely success – number of games to be played. The later the matches are in the tournament, the less likely each player is to score a goal (after all, a cagey semi-final against Spain isn’t likely to generate as many goals as a group match against Honduras, at least in theory. So, we’ve added in some multipliers to come up with a ‘final score’ for each contender, based on the current team betting. So, the four tournament favourites are most likely to take part in the maximum number of matches (three group stage, round of 16, quarter-final, semi-final and final/3rd place play-off) – they get an accumulator score of 10. The next four teams are statistically likely to go out at the quarter final stage, meaning they get two fewer matches than the ‘big four’ – meaning we’re giving them an accumulator score of just eight.
This carries on through the rounds, leading to the following accumulator scores (based on Betfair odds):
BRAZIL – 10pts
ARGENTINA – 10pts
GERMANY – 10pts
SPAIN – 10pts
BELGIUM – 8pts
FRANCE – 8pts
ENGLAND – 8pts
ITALY – 8pts
PORTUGAL – 6pts
URUGUAY - 6pts
HOLLAND - 6pts
COLUMBIA - 6pts
CHILE - 6pts
IVORY COAST - 6pts
RUSSIA - 6pts
BOSNIA - 6pts
CROATIA – 4pts
GHANA – 4pts
CAMEROON – 4pts
This makes things feel a bit weightier. Note that we’ve only included nations who have a named player priced at 100/1 or lower for top goalscorer. After all, no-one is expecting an Australian striker to get anywhere near that list. This brings us the following top-table of likely bets.
So, erm, it’s still Neymar who is the most likely bet. Away from that though, and avoiding the temptation to go for a surely-won’t-make-the-starting-XI-this-time Klose, the likes of Fred, Higuain and, er, Andre Schurrle could be a more tempting offer.
[Trots off to Honest Harry’s Betting Parlour and puts a £1.50 each-way bet on Messi.]
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