Best Football Strategy For Beginners (How To Find An Edge)

Trading football on Betfair can seem an overwhelming task at first glance, with many wondering what is the best football strategy to use…

  • Lay the draw.
  • Back a first-half goal.
  • Scalp The 0-0 in the first 15 minutes.
  • Pre-match trading.
  • Back the over 1.5 market after 30 minutes if the score line is 0-0.
  • Scalp the under 2.5 goal market
  • Lay the favourite.

Where should you start?

There are so many approaches that you can look at when trading the football markets on Betfair. However good trading doesn’t have to be complex, especially with the right FootyStats.

Simple strategies can still be very profitable!

Let’s take a look at the best football strategy for beginners in 2024. In this article, we will outline how to utilize this strategy to start making profits from your football trading. 

Reacting To Team News:

Changes in team lineups due to suspensions, injuries and motivations can give you a huge edge in the football betting markets. This is also a very low-risk football trading strategy, making it ideal for beginners!

Here is an example of how a change in a team’s motivation can affect the market.

Man City are due to play Brighton in a couple of days. When the market initially opened you can see at the start they were priced around 1.6. 

At the time the market opened Man City had still not secured the Premier League title. However, Arsenal’s loss to Brighton changed this and Man City were crowned champions. You can see this massively affected the odds for Man City in their upcoming game against Brighton due to the motivational change.

This was no longer a must-win game for Man City, it pretty much had the same significance as a friendly match.

Alongside this Man City have a Champions League and FA Cup final ahead of them. Which could see them rest key players.

These factors saw Man City’s odds drift all the way up to around 2.1 before the market readjusted and shortened back to 1.83.

How To Take Advantage Of Odds Movement:

Movement in odds can create profitable opportunities for us as football traders.

By backing at higher odds and laying at shorter odds we can cover all outcomes for a profit. We could also lay at lower odds first and back at higher odds to guarantee a profit. (Working exactly like the stock market.)

(Above is a trade on Lazio vs Cremonese which was based on the same principle as the Man City game. The market saw Lazio’s motivation to win as much higher then Cremonese due to league positions at the end of the season.)

Whilst the Brighton vs Man City market has already reacted to motivational changes. The team news for Man City is still unknown.

When the team lineups are announced an hour before the game starts on twitter there will be an opportunity to trade!

Should Man City field their best 11 players then it is very likely we will see the odds on Manchester City shorten from where they are currently.

If they decide to rest some of their key players and field some youth players for experience. Then it is likely we see the odds on Man City drift. The odds that currently exist in the market cannot fully account for the lineup as it is unknown. This gives us an opportunity as football traders, the market is likely to move one way or the other.

Reacting quickly to this information when it is released could allow you to lock in some low-risk profit. Back Man City on a strong lineup or lay them if they line up with youth players!

The Best Football Trading Strategy For Beginners

The type of trades outlined above can be your bread and butter early on in your football trading career. Football trading does not have to be overly complex, sometimes the best strategy is to be patient and wait for the best opportunities.

  • Managerial Changes
  • Weather Conditions
  • Injuries To Key Players
  • Under Performance
  • Cup Matches Going Into Extra Time

All of these factors can affect the odds for upcoming markets. Trading these scenarios can be a very easy way to profit from the football betting markets.

During big competitions such as the World Cup and Euro’s, you can often see changes match to match based on the performances of a team. Alongside the dynamics of the groups and qualifications.

Above we have the odds for Albania in their upcoming game against Spain. On the graph you can see that Albania’s odds started around 15.00, moved up to 18.00 and then were backed heavily into odds of 8.0. This is quite a big odds movement for football, let me explain why it happened…

  1. Initial odds 15.00 – Market opens and backers and layers settle at odds of 15.00
  2. Odds of 18.00 – Spain win impressively over Croatia in the first group game (causes Albania odds to drift)
  3. Albania backed into 8.0 – Spain beat Italy and qualified top of the group. This means they can rest players against Albania and even with a loss still qualify top. Albania can still qualify with a win, market see’s Albania motivation as greater and this causes odds to shorten.


What makes this one of the best football trading strategies you can apply to the markets, is it only requires some forward thinking. Whilst the majority of sports bettors are locked into the game that’s happening in the moment or the game that is happening tonight.

The smart football trader will be aware of how potential situations can effect the match that is happening in one weeks time or in 3/4 days. Becoming aware of how markets react to different scenarios can be a huge edge if you want to make profits in the long term.

Alongside this simply knowing who the key players are in football matches that you intend to trade can make you money.

Football trading doesn’t have to be complicated, sometimes the best football strategy is just being patient and picking off the best opportunities when they arrive!

Want learn more about football trading?

Below is an in-depth article covering four different football trading strategies!

Four Profitable Betfair Football Trading Strategies

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