The ideas in this article are for matches, where there is a clear favourite, with the underdog second favourite and the draw is the rank outsider. The table below shows an example, where Chelsea is favourite; Brighton is the underdog and the Draw is the outsider.

Brighton | Draw | Chelsea | |

Odds | 3.4 | 4.1 | 2.2 |

In this post, I will deal with the following 2 main situations:

- When a goal is not scored
- When a goal is scored

In this post, I employ the phrases “Current Scores” and “Connecting Scores” to refer the following:

- Current Score is the score at any moment in time – when no goals gave been scored the current score is 0-0
- Connecting scores are the next possible scores, should either side score a goal – when no goals gave been scored the connecting scores are 1-0 and 0-1

## A. Correct Scores 0-0, 1-0 and 0-1

In this section, I will discuss how the current and connecting scores tend to change from the start of the match.

### 1. **No Goals are Scored**

Correct scores, 0-0, 1-0, and 0-1, alter similarly to when the teams are closely matched. If a goal isn’t scored, the odds on 0-0, 1-0 and 0-1 will progressively reduce up until around the 65^{th} minute of the match.

At around the 65^{th} minute, the odds of the current score (which, in this case is 0-0) will reduce and all other scores (including 1-0 and 0-1) will start to move out.

### 2. Goal is Scored

Once a goal is scored, 0-0 and one of the one goal score lines are finished.

The new current score will be 1-0 or 0-1. The change in the odds of the new current score will depend on:

- The time that the goal was scored
- The amount of anticipated action in the game

Let’s assume that first goal is scored by the home team and the current score is 1-0. It doesn’t make much difference whether the favourite or the outsider takes the lead in the match. The odds on 1-0 will move similarly.

The odds for 1-0 and 0-1 will be different before a goal is scored. The favourite will have shorter odds compared to the underdog. In addition, the odds will move in the same direction, whether a goal is scored or not.

**After an Early Goal – Increased Odds for 1-0 followed by a Decline**

*High Action Matches*

In high action matches, if the first goal is scored during minutes 0-15, the odds of 1-0 will increase. This is because, in a high action game, the market will be anticipating more goals. If the game has had a lot of action, the first goal can result in an increase of the odds of 1-0 up to the 50^{th} minute of the game.

*Low Action Matches*

With low action matches, the odds will decrease for 1-0 if the goal is scored around the 20^{th} minute or later. The market will be expecting the leading side to defend their lead, while the trailing side will try to equalise. As such, the next score line of 1-1 is more likely than 2-0.

**Table 1: The Effects of the First Goal on the odds of 1-0**

Early (1st Half) | Late (1st Half) | Early (2nd Half) | Late (2nd Half) | |
---|---|---|---|---|

Low Action | NS | Reduce | Reduce | Reduce |

High Action | Increase | NS | Reduce | Reduce |

## B. Correct Score 1-1

At the start of a match, 1-1 will often have the shortest odds, compared to all other correct scores. Therefore, it is worth closely examining the 1-1 scoreline.

### 1. Goal is Scored

Note that in this section, when I say the odds will shorten or lengthen for 1-1, I am comparing the odds with the odds at kick-off. From the 25th minute, after a goal is scored, the odds for 1-1 will usually shorten from the odds immediately before the goal. However, it is of interest, whether the odds drop below the odds at kick-off.

If the first goal is scored in the first 15 minutes of a match, the direction in which the odds of will change depends on whether the favourite or the underdog scored the goal.

#### a) **Favourite Scores the First Goal**

If the first goal was scored by the favourite in the first 15 minutes of the match, the odds on the 1-1 draw will become longer. The odds reflect the fact that the market is anticipating more goals. It is also more likely that the favourite will score a second goal compared to the underdog scoring an equaliser.

If the favourite scores the first goal during the 16^{th} to the 30^{th} minute of the match, the odds of 1-1 probably won’t move much. If the favourite scores closer to half-time or early in the second half, the odds for 1-1 will shorten.

This is because, if there is only one goal in the first half, the market will not be expecting a lot of goals. Therefore, the most likely scores will be the current score and the connecting scores of 2-0 and 1-1.

#### b) Underdog Scores the First Goal

If the underdog scores the first goal in the first 15 minutes, the odds for 1-1 are likely to decrease. In this case, the expectation of the market is that the favourite will score the next goal.

If the underdog scores the first goal is scored between the 15^{th} and the 65^{th} minute of the match, the odds of the 1-1 draw will reduce significantly.

#### Table 2: The Effects of the First Goal on the odds of 1-1

Early (1st Half) | Late (1st Half) | Early (2nd Half) | Late (2nd Half) | |
---|---|---|---|---|

Low Action (Favourite) | Increase | Reduce | Reduce | Reduce |

Low Action (Underdog) | Reduce | Reduce | Reduce | Reduce |

High Action (Favourite) | Increase | NS | Reduce | Reduce |

High Action (Underdog) | Increase | Reduce | Reduce | Reduce |

## C. **All Other Correct Scores**

When no goals are scored, the odds on all correct scores (excluding the current and connection scores) will move out from the start of the match.

When the first goal is scored, the odds of the new current score and new connecting scores will shorten. The other score lines will also come in. The magnitude of this change is dependent on whether the favourite or the underdog scored the first goal.

If we look at the connecting score lines, the movement of the odds will reflect the fact that, the team that started favourite in the match, will usually be favourite to score the next goal. For example, if the favourite scores the first goal, the score will be 1-0. The new connecting scores will be 2-0 and 1-1. If the underdog scores the first goal, the new connecting scores will be 0-2 and 1-1.

In these cases, both score lines will shorten. However, the score line, where the favourite scores the next goal will shorten by a greater amount.

## D. Conclusions

If there is a large difference in the odds of the 2 teams, it becomes more difficult to trade. It helps if you know a bit about football. You should look for a favourite that is at the top of its form.

If you don’t know much about football, it is best to stick to matches where both teams are equally matched. This is because the odds change symmetrically in these matches. Therefore, you don’t have the worry of the wrong team scoring the first goal.