Can Leicester qualify for the champions league?

16/01/2016 | By | Reply More

Did you know, Leicester have been here before? Read on….


The thing I love about the modern football analytics movement is there are increasing amounts of, free, data out there that will help you make good, sensible, rational decisions. Far more than I could have ever imagined.

It’s a long way from when I wrote to a magazine in the 80’s about in-play football and the editors response was that he couldn’t see how it would interest anybody.

Quite a lot of chatter at the moment about how Leicester will perform this year given the amazing form to date. Half my trading is based on detailed analysis and carefully thought out and researched information. The second half, excuse the pun, is on how I think people will act. The psychological aspect.


In just about every market I’ve viewed everybody extrapolates trends to readily. If this happened here, then lets draw a massive line extending that infinity into the future. That’s not realistic and is a common mistake, so I’m happy to bet against it. Take a look at this season already. Fairly early in Man City were 1.38 for the title, that’s a crazy price so early on! That’s why I’m betting against Leicester. But there are also other reasons to do so.

I’d encourage you to navigate to the following blog: –

Can Leicester continue to surprise?

But if want a quick summary here are some key points: –

  1. The Foxes are the 10th “surprise” team of the 20 club era to reach the halfway point of the season in the top four , but none of the previous nine managed to sustain their performance and finish the season in at least fourth position.
  2. If the Foxes were to complete the 2015/2016 season in the top four, they would be the first genuine surprise team to do since Nottingham Forest finished third in 1994/1995 (Peter edits – Different era!)
  3. Leicester City have also been here before? 15 years ago, the Foxes were third at the halfway point with only four points fewer than their current total of 39. Subsequently though they managed 13 points from the next 19 and collapsed to 13th spot.

If you look at most models however, they are forecasting a top four finish for Leicester. But I feel this underestimates the ability of nearby teams to pull a rabbit out of the hat in the second half. After all if you look at the financial incentive, the January transfer window. Leicester’s reliance on key players, the potential for injuries and other factors it looks more compelling. Typically it’s an unexpected result that is the trigger for a loss in confidence. It hasn’t happened yet, but there is a demonstrable chance it will.

Grabbing some data I looked at recent top fours and it’s, more or less, dominated by the teams you would expect. Wenger has done a great job! City rank lowly as it’s only mid way through the data that they started chucking money at the problem.

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Don’t get me wrong, I would love it if Leicester can mix things up a bit this year. That would be great. But where I have made most of my money is by betting against the crowd. When people complain or rile you for your position, or people think you are mad, you know you are probably on the right path. If everybody agrees with you then that’s when I get worried. Conversely the more people rubbish something the better I feel about it. Long may the unpopularity continue!

Of course nothing impossible, it just varies from likely to very unlikely, but I can tend to view that will a lot of clarity.

Going against the prevailing wisdom is unpopular and uncomfortable but it’s something I have made a lot of money from! It’s something I reckon will always be the case because people find it so difficult to do.

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Category: Football trading strategies, Trading strategies

About the Author ()

I left a good job in the consumer technology industry to go a trade on Betfair for a living way back in June 2000. I've been here ever since pushing very boundaries of what's possible on betting exchanges and loved every minute of it.

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