Draw Betting

Betting on draws feels like trying to open a combination lock by using blind luck. You obviously understand how it works, you simply don’t know the code number. You only have to cross your fingers, trust your instinct and make a guess.

That’s what most punters think about draws. It’s a matter of luck instead of analysis. The truth is that, apart from a few circumstances in certain leagues, no team will start a match with the aim of only earning a draw, so sharing points is indeed the most unlikely result. That’s why the draw odds are usually the highest in a set of 1X2 odds, especially when there’s no real difference between two opponents.

Small confirmation possibilities

Focusing solely on draws is the perfect recipe for an unpredictable betting strategy. Especially when you’re building parlay bets. Winning a 5-fold parlay has a tiny 0,41% confirmation probability. Trying to predict five straight draws, even from a variety of leagues, is like searching for a needle in a haystack.

The above is not considered betting. It is gambling.

Instead of placing draw accas it’s perhaps preferable to expect to win the lottery. Although the winning possibilities are virtually non existent, the larger expected profits should give you that warm feeling of being once again “that close to a fortune”.

A different way of thinking

So, what’s my advice? Ignore draws like they never existed and focus elsewhere? Far from it. Draw betting requires a certain analysis, that is based on different criteria compared to finding match winners. If you follow this way of thinking, you’ll see your winning percentage on draws rise, even more than bookies expect.

Important notice: This article is not about “convenient” draws that are common in a leagues’ closing fixtures. If you follow the Italian Serie B, for example, or the French Ligue 2, you’ve certainly bumped into some matches, where the draw is the favorite result. We don’t analyze these kind of matches and we strongly suggest avoiding them. We’ll talk about matches where the draw is by far the second or third likely result, offered at odds similar or above 3.00.

Four golden rules of draw betting

Rule No1: Forget your “conventional” way of analyzing a football match to find the winner. If you’re used to searching for recent form, past results or injuries and suspensions, you need to step back in your detailed reading and look at the match in a different way.

The key word is “motivation”. Will any of the two teams be happy with a draw, regardless if they manage to actually earn one? A team trying to get hold of at least a point, will keep defending till the dying seconds. This makes for an ideal scenario when trying to find draws.

This is somewhat different from the most common view of “draw searching”. Most punters will just glance at the league table and pick the closest teams. Their way of thinking is simple: When two teams are close in the table, they’re similar in quality. And when they’re similar in quality, their chances of cancelling each other out are high. This is rarely common, however. When there’s a small difference between them, they’re both motivated to win the match, not play for a draw. Drawing the match, might even feel like having lost two points.

Rule No2: You’re better off looking for low-scoring teams. Of course there have been goal-fiesta draws (2-2, 3-3 etc.), but a team missing their leading scorer, a key playmaker in the midfield or a they face difficulties in scoring are more likely to draw in the long term.

Rule No3: Watch out for some “convenient” draws BEFORE the last fixtures of the league. In the last matchday any draw results that benefit both opponents are well known to bookies and are offered on extremely low odds. However, if you study carefully each team’s last fixtures, you could focus on some matches that may seem competitive at first glance, but have a high probability of point sharing.

Rule No4: Consecutive draws usually aren’t only a matter of luck. They show a specific team’s mentality or a coach’s way of thinking. Even today there are coaches who are happy to grab a point in an away match and focus only on winning their home ties. So, you should mark the teams that tend to make draw series or have drawn many matches during a certain period of time.

The most unlikely result

Keep in mind that in a well balanced- match the draw in most cases will have the highest odds. What does this reveal? Bookies consider that the draw result has the less possibilities to be confirmed. This is completely opposite to most punter’s view, who consider the draw a reasonable outcome between two similar strength teams. Who’s right? The bookies, of course. If not, they would decrease the draw odds. The draw possibilities on matches, where the draw has the second highest odds (i.e. there’s a clear favorite in the tie) are bigger.

One last piece of advice: When chasing draws, don’t expect a 50% winning percentage. Not even 40%. You should pursue a profit at a winning percentage around 30%. Even a two match acca can be profitable. Don’t push your luck though with fourolds and fivefolds, unless you are willing to lose that extra bit of money.