Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Losing run continues......

Another shocking week for the systems and I’m starting to worry just a little bit now. Given we’re only about 60% of the way through the season, my worry now is that the betting banks for various systems are starting to come under a little bit of pressure. I’ll do a piece of analysis at the end of the month to look at the drawdowns on each system as quite a few are now at historical drawdowns I suspect but I’m praying that things turn soon.

After this weekend, my proofed results for this season are now showing a loss and to be loss making after 728 bets this season isn’t a great situation to be in. I think the thing I’m personally struggling with is that the systems only suffered 3 losing months in their first 20 live months and yet, January is going to be the 3rd losing month in the last 3 months!  My overall ROI since inception has dropped to only 11% which is very disappointing.

It’s quite difficult to understand I think and my own betting P&L has taken a massive plunge over the last month or so and ultimately, I’m sitting here writing this tonight and questioning whether this is all worth it or not. I’m not a great loser as I’ve said before and I do take losing runs quite badly and at the moment, this is easily the lowest I’ve felt since I switched my attention to football betting 3 years ago.

As I said in the email last night, I just need to continue on and hope things improve.  Thousands of live results and tens of thousands of backtested results lead me to believe that things will turn around at some point but boy, could I do with it happening soon!

So, the last week then.  Can be summed up in one phrase I think….too many draws.

Est Systems

 Another big loss here and with only 8 winners from 42 bets, no chance of making a profit.  AH returns weren’t much better. Rubbish. A loss of 19.65pts from 42 bets.

New Systems

A massive loss here. A loss of 33.86pts from 70 bets. Horrible. Clearly, the draw was to blame in the main with a profit of 3.33pts is using AH0.5 on all bets.  

Misc Systems

Another big loss here. A loss of 20.61pts from 42 bets.  Disgusting.

Under/Over Systems

A profit again on these systems. 2.31pts profit from 8 games. Shocking (in the surprised sense!)

Euro Systems

I do feel a little sorry for these Euro systems this week. It’s a massive loss but with a bit of luck, they should have had a good weekend, bordering on a great weekend. A loss of 32.9pts from 80 games and yet, a profit of 6.3pts if using AH0.5. Just about sums it up. 

Overall, another terrible update. A loss of 104.71pts from 242 bets.

Already looking forward to the next update……NOT!

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Proud but embarrassed.....

I’m sure I wasn’t the only person to be surprised at the fact the service managed to obtain 3 awards (from the 3 categories I was competing in) at the annual SBC tipster awards for 2012. You can take this as my acceptance speech……

If I’m being honest, I’m actually embarrassed to be honoured for the performance of my systems when they are currently going through the toughest spell in their 3 season history. Timing is everything in life and when I saw the SBC had opened the voting a wee while back, I was sort of resigned to the fact that given the performance during the 2012/13 season so far, no one would dream of voting for the service in any of the categories. Knowing some of the competition in each category, I thought if I got top 3 in any category, I’d be doing well!

Now that I’ve seen the results, I’m cringing a little at the fact that some people who have joined the service this season must be thinking WTF is going on here! The fact I obtained 2nd place in the ‘Best Overall Tipster’ category is slightly astounding for me given how tough a season it has been but then again, I would imagine the criteria people vote on goes beyond simply looking at the results for the last few months.

Finishing 2nd in the ‘Best Football Tipster’ category was also a great achievement and having seen the results the winner has had in 2012, I think finishing 2nd to such a great service is very humbling. The final award for finishing 3rd in the ‘Best Sports Betting Tipster’ category is also amazing and to finish in the top 3 in all 3 categories the service qualified for is amazing.

To try to understand the results a little, I’ve pulled together a quick table to summarise the results by system for 2012 calendar year. This obviously includes the second half of last season and the first half of this season. I know no one really cares about a calendar year of results (or at least, I don’t!) but given the awards are for 2012 year, I think these results probably paint a fair reflection of the service in 2012.

At a high level, I have proofed 9,063 bets during 2012. I’ll be amazed if any service in the market has proofed more bets during 2012 but then again, it’s about the results and not about the number of bets!

In total, there has been a profit of 781.4pts which is an ROI of 8.6%. Pretty good at a total level I think but similar to when I reviewed the season to date results at the start of this month, when you start to look at the results by system, there have been a lot of disappointing performances during 2012.  From 41 live systems during 2012, 7 have been loss making although the largest loss was only 5.2pts on any one system.

I can easily pick out system 7-22 as being the worst performing system during 2012.  A 7% loss across 73 bets in 2012 isn’t a great return for a calendar year! Very disappointing and there appears to be no end to the current downturn on this system based on the recent results too.

At the other end of the scale, the star performers would be the New systems which went live for the 2012/13 season and of course, the Misc Systems stand out as being star performers. They finished last season well and have done very well during the first half of this season.

I think looking at these results, it’s maybe easier to see why the systems picked up some of the awards for 2012 but I still feel quite down about the current performance at the moment.  Going into the season, I’m not sure there was a service that could get anywhere near my results for the last two seasons but for whatever reason, it just hasn’t happened this season.

I’m trying my best to not be too overdramatic in emails to subscribers about how tough I’m finding this season but compared to the first two seasons, this season is proving very tough. As well as being physically draining (updating and monitoring 41 systems is a lot of work!), the ups and downs this season have been mentally draining. 

I’m trying my best to not look too far ahead but I suspect the next few months of this season will determine what happens after this season. At this present moment, the thought of going through all of this for another season isn’t exactly an appealing thought but then again, a good few months of profits and I’m sure my attitude may change.

Anyway, thanks to everyone who voted for the service in the various categories and I really hope the systems can repay these votes over the rest of this season and hopefully, over the next few seasons.

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Two steps forward, two steps back.......

Well, I’d love to say things have improved since my last post which was a bit of a rant but unfortunately, things haven’t changed. If I’m honest, I’m even more frustrated writing this post than I was writing the last post.

Last weekend ended up being one of the best weekends of the season and the P&L got a massive boost. As has happened a few times this season, the systems have followed up a good set of fixtures with an absolute shocker of a weekend this weekend. At times, it’s hard to believe it’s the same fuc*ing ratings from one week to the next. Seriously, how they can get so many games right one weekend and then absolutely nothing right the next weekend is unbelievable.

So, this update covers the last two weekends in total. Overall, it doesn’t look too bad but if you study the P&L by day, you’ll see that it’s a massive profit last weekend and a massive loss this weekend. Very frustrating but I’m not surprised in the slightest. Sums up this season so far….rubbish.

Established Systems

A profit of 14.99pts from 165 bets. Considering a profit of over 58pts was made in one day last Saturday, it’s frustrating to only have a near 15pt profit. Then again, if the weekends had been reversed, I’d be jumping for joy about posting a 15pt profit, so I need to keep it in perspective I suspect.

As you can see, the AH returns for AH0.25 and AH0.50 are better than the outright returns. The systems haven’t had the best time of it with draws and this is frustrating also. When the systems are struggling as they have been, hitting too many draws doesn’t help the P&L either.

Overall, a profit is at least a step forward for these systems but the way they’ve lost all the profits this weekend after a good weekend last weekend is annoying.

New Systems

A profit of 8.29pts from 170 bets. A very similar story to the Est Systems and if you look at the AH returns, all of the AH returns are better than outright betting. This again points to too many draws which is definitely something we’ve seen the last two weekends on these systems.

I think the big difference between the Est Systems and the New Systems this season is that the New Systems just have done a lot better at dodging the really bad days. They’ve had lots of really good days (more good days than the Est Systems!) but the systems do seem to dodge the really bad days which helps to keep the P&L moving upwards generally.

Similar story to the first set of systems but only posting a small profit is frustrating after last weekend’s performance.

Misc Systems

A profit of 8.89pts from 104 bets.  The AH returns here really stand out and clearly, the systems have struggled a fair bit from too many draws since the last update.

I think the story of these systems since the last update can be analysed by Home and Away bets. I follow these Home bets with decent sized stakes based on historical performance and I know that they have had a great spell in the last two weeks.

Here is a quick update to show the performance split by Home/Away:

A very good profit for the Homes and clearly, the Aways have struggled with too many draws.  Frustrating stuff again but similar comments to above, a profit is a profit I guess.

Under/Over Systems

A small profit of 2.27pts from 15 bets since the last update. Not surprisingly, the Overs have made all the profits and this fits in with what we’ve seen so far this season.   Again, a profit is a profit I guess!

Euro Systems

I think these systems sum up this update pretty well. A loss of 29.2pts from 224 bets. However, this doesn’t tell the story at all I think and it was a profit of 9.1pts if using AH0.5. Clearly, far too many draws on these systems (again!) and if you look at the profit last weekend of 33pts profit on the Friday evening, it’s hard to believe I’m posting a fairly big loss on these systems!

I could pick out a couple of games this weekend where we were on big prices and both teams managed draws but unfortunately, when backing outright, you don’t get anything for draws!


For this update then, I make it a profit of 5.24pts from 678 bets. If I tell you that the profit was well in excess of 100pts last weekend, that probably sums up my frustration at the moment.  Two steps forward, two steps back.

It really is turning out to be one of these seasons……. 

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Variability by month......

I think one of the more interesting pieces of analysis I’ve done on the blog was when I looked at the performance of the systems (it was the all Est system bets) and looked at how they do by month of the year. Obviously, individual months are a little too low level to do any real form of analysis and so I grouped the data into half years. I said the season was split Aug-Dec and then Jan-May. Although it’s not an exact split, it varies by league, it was the best I could do if I remember rightly and given I can get the results by month easy enough, it’s a nice way to split the results.

I had a quick read of the blog and I can’t actually find the analysis I did previously. No big deal as I’m updating it now but any long-term readers of the blog will be fully aware of the conclusions that were very clear from the analysis first time round.

In summary, the clear concusion was that the second half of the season was tougher for my systems to make a profit. I didn’t ever manage to fully understand why this would be the case but there were lots of ideas thrown around before about how many meaningless games you get close to season end and then you have teams concentrating on cup games and European games and so on.  Basically, the conclusion was that the first half of the season was the place to make money and since the systems went live, I’ve definitely found this to be the case. That was until of course, this season!

Anyway, the reason for this post is that someone contacted me to look at the performance again by season but in particular, to look at the split between Home and Away bets.

The hypothesis for this was that they believe that the second half of the season favours home bets and the first half of the season favours away bets. Now, I know from personal experience that I’ve thought this myself as in the first half of the seasons, it has tended to be the away bets making all the big profits but they tend to go off the boil and are replaced by the Home bets making money. I know last season the Homes started the season badly and this season, the Homes have been heavily loss making as I’ve been on the end of this myself in my own portfolio of systems as I stake more on Home bets than Away bets.

So, I’ve pulled together the following table. This shows the results summary for all Established System bets in total to keep it simple. I could obviously have chosen any subset of systems but if I stick with these systems, they at least have been around for 2.5 seasons now. At the end of the post, I’ve shown the performance by month for those who really want to study the results. 

The top table shows the performance for all bets, the second table shows the performance for Away bets and the bottom table shows the performance for Home bets.

I don’t need to spell out the results too much as they jump off the page I think but basically, you can see in the overall results that there is a clear bias of profitability towards the first half of the season. No surprise here as it backs up what I’ve done before and it’s the way I think about the systems myself.

For the Away bets, you can see the bias is much more than on all the bets and the results are very skewed towards the first half of the season. The first half of the season generates a 25.5% return whereas the second half of the season only generates a 11.8% return. This is a massive drop off and the first half of the season is more than twice as profitable as the second half.

You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to know what must happen with the Home bets then……..

Clearly, the Home bets are the complete opposite and the second half of the season is more profitable than the first half. A 22.5% profit in the second half of the season compared to a 15.9% profit in the first half of the season.

Why is all this relevant?

Well, if you look at the results so far in 2012/13H2 (which is only two weeks of January mind you), it does look like history is already starting to repeat itself. The Home bets have won back all the losses made in the first half of the season and Away bets are in a loss making position. Obviously, it’s still early days and if history does repeat itself over the next few months, the season isn’t going to improve too much for most of us as there are about 50% more Away bets than Home bets, so if Away bets are on a downturn and Home bets are improving, the overall results are going to be down!

On the bright side, one thing looking at this does suggest is that a lot of profit can be made in a 5-6 month spell. Therefore, although the first half of the season has been disappointing (a 2.5% return over 1,523 bets), it is only a small sample of bets in the overall scheme of things and it makes me chuckle that the first two weeks of January has generated almost as much profit as the first half of the season!

I always tend to finish these analysis posts saying so what?  Well, at the end of this season, we’ll now have 3 seasons of live results, thousands of live bets and if there is clear evidence of a trend such as this, even if we can’t explain it and there is no real reason for it, should we act upon it?

Knowing the results historically has always led me to believe that compounding stakes on my systems is never a good idea since the second half of the season tends to be worse than the first half and nothing in this analysis makes me change my mind.  However, for those of us playing higher stakes on Homes this season and cursing the losses in the first half of the season, I think there is a great deal of hope that things may get a little better sooner, rather than later.

For those following away bets predominantly or compounding stakes….strap yourself in for the ride!

Here's the full analysis by month.

Monday, 14 January 2013

An interesting strategy?

This week, I’m hoping to get some time to pull together a few pieces of analysis that a couple of my subscribers have asked for. I mentioned the 3 pieces of analysis in the email tonight but the first piece is actually much more interesting than I thought it would be!

For a recent blog post, a subscriber had asked me to look at what had happened if you simply staked 1pt on every UK or Euro bet that appeared this season. I looked at it for this season and being honest, I didn’t think it looked that good. The guy clearly saw some potential though and asked me to look at the results going back in time so he could get an idea of the drawdowns and the historical results from the previous live results and from backtesting.

I’ve spent an hour playing with the data tonight and now I’m done, I think the results are actually better than I thought they would be.  I should state that these results are bang up to date and include the weekend past even though these results are not on the blog as yet.

Here’s the UK results first:

As you can see, quite an interesting P&L graph and quite interesting results I think.   Clearly, you need to be careful here as we are looking at a mixture of live and backtested results but the results from this season are obviously 100% live.

I think if you look at the P&L graph, the thing that strikes me is how steady the profit line is. There aren’t too many ups and downs and this is reflected in the drawdown graph.  The max drawdown of 34pts has been hit twice historically but 34pts isn’t too bad for a drawdown.  If we apply a simple multiplier here, we would probably be looking at a bank of around 75pts to follow this method.

If you look at the annual P&L, you’re ROC looks pretty decent each season and even this season, with it being far from a vintage season, you’d be sitting on a profit of 44.8pts. Not bad considering we’re not quite at the halfway stage of the season and if the second half of the season followed the first half, you’d easily achieve a 100% ROC again this season.

One stat that jumps off the page for me is the fact that Homes are losing this season which isn’t that surprising given I know how hard it has been for Home bets this season but if you look at the away bets, the results are stunning this season. A 19.5% ROI is a fair bit in front of the long-term results and therefore, I’d be worried that this has probably peaked this season already!

Overall, some very interesting results and although it’s quite a high turnover system if you choose to follow this idea, the results look very decent.

I would imagine that getting the prices on the bets would be fairly easy generally as any bet that only appears on one system or on a few systems isn’t going to be followed by 90% of the subscribers (nor me!), so it may well be the case that these odds could be beaten long-term.

How do the Euro bets look?

Just looking at the results, I think we need to be really careful here. We only have this season’s live results to go on and therefore, I’d definitely put less weight on the Euro results compared to the UK results. In addition, we only have 2 Euro algorithms as against 4 UK algorithms, so I suspect that long-term, the results may not be as good.

The results look a lot more variable with the Euro bets and there has been a much larger drawdown of 50pts once which again tempers my enthusiasm but I think the biggest issue here is that we just don’t have enough live bets.

246 bets this season isn’t a lot and an ROI of 7.9% is decent enough but I think we need to see more bets. I’ll update this analysis at the season end if someone reminds me to during the Summer.  Will be interesting to see how the second half of the season pans out.

I think this post answers this questions the subscriber asked me to look at during the week. If there is anything else, please get in touch. 

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Pile of pooh!

I’ve just spent the last 4 hours updating the results spreadsheets, updating the ratings after the weekend games, updating my betting sheets and basically, I think the title of this post sums up my feelings at the present moment.

My ratings appear to have turned to a pile of shit overnight and ultimately, some of the recent selections and the results have been embarrassing.

I’ve let off steam a few times before on the blog during bad spells and no doubt people will read this who are following the systems and tut to themselves but at the end of the day, I don’t like losing money and I’m a terrible loser. I’m probably the worst loser I know of when it comes to gambling and therefore, I don’t tend to lose money over a decent period of time but these systems are really getting on my nerves.  The weaker bets are generally doing OK but the bigger value UK bets are killing me and many others I suspect.

The highest value bets aren’t winning and it is as easy as that. The selections are shortening in price as I would expect as I’m finding decent value on these bets, others are clearly backing the same selections and yet, they just aren’t winning.

Can’t really be arsed going through the results by each set of systems as I’m tired and pis*ed off but the overall results so far in 2013 are:

A loss of 15.27pts from 122 bets on the Est Systems
A loss of 0.24pts from 144 bets on the New Systems
A loss of 19.94pts from 66 bets on the Misc Systems
A loss of 2.95pts from 16 bets on the Under/Over Systems
A profit of 16.3pts from 48 bets on the Euro Systems

Overall, 396 bets and a loss of 22.1pts. Doesn’t seem like that big a loss but unfortunately for me, the Misc Systems and Est Systems make up most of my portfolio, so my loss so far in 2013 is bigger than 22.1pts.

Now, the Euro systems look OK clearly but you know what, I’m pissed off with these systems too. System E7 had 6 bets and managed 5 winners. In a usual weekend, I’d be rubbing my hands with glee thinking about the profits that the combined systems would make when this happens but unfortunately for me, systems E1-E3 even manage to mess this up and filter out most of the winners on system E7. Only one bet made it onto E2-E7 to E3-E7 and of course, it was a last minute winner but ffs, E1-E7 had 4 winners from 5 bets. Trust E2-E7 to decide to filter all the bets out!

PS. Probably never a good idea for me to write a results post after a maximum loss yet again tonight on a team but sometimes, just sometimes, you need to let off some steam. 

Sunday, 6 January 2013

Quick piece of analysis

Hopefully everyone following the systems took a little bit of time to read the last post. I’ve had a few comments back from subscribers and on the whole, it has been very positive. I think people are able to separately their own portfolio performance so far this season away from the performance of the systems and the underlying ratings and I think that’s the right thing to do.

I suspect due to the fact the established systems are having a tough season to date, many subscribers aren’t achieving the levels of profit they’d hoped they would have achieved so far this season. However, as I said at the start of the season, every subscriber is responsible for their own profitability this season and ultimately, depending on what systems we choose to follow, that dictates where our P&L would end up.

People external to the service will look at the proofed results and see it has been a tough season as the service is basically breaking even this season. I think this is fair as in the first two seasons, the proofed results were better than following all systems, so I can’t have it both ways. This season, following all systems is better than following the established combined systems.

A few people contacted me after the last post to tell me to keep the chin up and that they are having a decent season from following multiple systems. It’s nice to hear this as all I’ve heard most of the season is from disgruntled subscribers who are following system 7-22 or 7-22 to 8-22 and are having a tough time of it this season. 

The subscribers having a tough time of it from email correspondence are those following the bets using AHs. This season, the best bets haven’t been winning, the Homes have been shockingly bad, the weaker bets at bigger odds have been holding up the P&L but if using AH bets, you are losing money on the Homes, you are losing money on the best bet aways and on the teams that are winning, you asking for a big handicap and thus, nullifying any edge you have! I dread to think how bad the results have been this season for those following AH bets only.

Again though, those who chose this path did so from their own choice and therefore, they are responsible for their P&L. I know someone has written to me asking for advice and whether I think it was a really bad idea to follow AH bets but being honest, before this season, you could have did anything you wanted and made a profit. I said as much as this in the Summer. However, AH bets really erode a large part of your edge and if there isn’t much of an edge there (as has been the case this season with the established systems), that break-even result will seem a long way away if using AH betting!

At the end of the day, I probably need to face up to the fact that this season, for the first time in 3 seasons, not every subscriber will make a decent profit from following the service. I know it’s not ideal and ultimately, it will no doubt impact on the propensity of these people to resubscribe next season if they have had a bad experience this season but that’s the way it goes at this game.

Anyway, the reason for this post was to do a quick piece of analysis. Two people contacted me to ask me what the P&L would have been for the UK bets and Euro bets this season if simply following every team that appeared, regardless of which system it appeared on and regardless of how many times it appeared on systems.  This analysis is based on results to the end 2012.

I’ve looked at this before on the blog a few times at points in time.  What I tend to find is that the returns aren’t as good as following a single algorithm on its own. So, for example, I would expect 6,21,31 and 41 to beat the returns from this method n the long-term. This has happened the last few times I’ve looked at this (couldn’t find the blog posts but I have looked at this in each of the last two seasons for sure).

Anyway, here are the results for the UK systems this season.

What this shows is the results for each algorithm (6,21,31 and 41) and then underneath, it shows the results if simply putting 1pt on every team that appears on any of these 4 systems.

As you can see, the results from backing each team  when it appears only returns an ROI of 4.5% from 553 bets. This doesn’t compare too favourably with system 21 or 41 but isn’t too far behind system 31. The only algorithm that this method beats is algorithm one (system 6).

What I would say is that if you can generate a 4.5% return from just backing every team that appears, then this isn’t too bad. I’ve said before on the blog that if each algorithm can achieve a return of between 3%-5% each season, I’d be happy. Only system 6 is below that so far this season and over the first two seasons, every algorithm has achieved this target, so there is every chance that this will be achieved again this season for the UK systems.

Now onto the Euro systems….

Here are the results:

Backing every team that appears this season generates a profit of 9.6% from 219 bets. This is very good I think. However, when you look at each algorithm and the fact they have profits of 13.7% and 12.2% this season, you have to think it is better to simply follow an algorithm in isolation rather than follow every bet that appears.

This is probably the crux of this analysis. For the UK systems, 3 of the single algorithms are doing better than simply following every bet that appears and for the Euro systems, both algorithms are doing better than following every bet that appears.  Therefore, I don’t believe following every bet that appears is a method that can improve your profitability using my systems. You are better following a single system but then again, long-term, combined systems beat single systems, so all in all, not sure there is too much wrong with what most of us are doing at the moment!

Hopefully this answers the question both subscribers had.  If not, just get in touch with me again via email.

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Half Season Review & Live Results Update

As promised on the last post, I have taken the time to write a review of the season to date. In addition, I think it’s also important that we take a quick look at the live system results so we can put this season into some sort of context. It would be easy to only look at half a season and think some systems may be the best systems ever and other systems may look absolute rubbish but we need to look at as many live results as we have to give some form of context.

As most of you know, this project started over 2 seasons ago now, so this half season is only 20% of the overall live results, so basing future investment decisions on 20% of the data in some cases when we have the other 80% of data available to us would be folly. I’ll touch on this point once I finish the half season review.

So, how have the results been so far this season……Here they are here in a nice little table I’ve used before on the blog.

There is obviously a lot of data in this table as I’ve said before but I think it’s best to look at the high level figures before drilling down into each set of systems.

At a high level, there have been 5,818 system bets this season to the end of December. I expect to proof around 14,000-15,000 system bets this season and in particular, the Euro systems are not even 1/3 of the way through the season yet, so these systems will have many more bets in the second half of the season than the first half.

If simply backing 1pt on every system bet that has been generated, you would have achieved a profit of 466.5pts. This is an ROI of 8%.

This is slightly below where I aim for at an overall level (10% would be this figure) and long-term, the system bets before this season had achieved about 8.5% ROI over 8,700 bets, so it has been slightly below par at an overall level this season. This is disappointing in its own right but it’s safe to say it hasn’t been the best season so far and it’s reflected in the results we’re seeing here.

If we now look at my official proofed results which are meant to be a representation of the profits that can be achieved to potential subscribers (as proofed to the SBC), then this is simply the 6 combined established systems.  The SBC have been proofing these systems since inception and have been reporting back to their members on the performance.  This season, after a decent start in September, the systems have really struggled thereafter.

As you can see in the table, the established combined systems are showing a profit of 5pts from 588 bets. This is very disappointing and ultimately, doesn’t pain the service in the best light but importantly, I think it’s a fair indication of the season to date. The majority of subscribers follow these 6 systems and therefore, these results should represent the performance of the service so far this season.

Interestingly, if you break down the results by system, 6-21 has 19.4pts profit, 6-22 has 2.4pts and the other 4 systems are losing money so far this season. The 3 worst performing systems are 7-22, 8-21 and 8-22 and combined, these are showing a loss of 16.1pts from 124 bets.

I know from my regular exchanges with subscribers that a few decided to drop 6-21 this season since this system contained a lot of so called weaker bets and over the first two seasons, these bets were breaking even at best. On 6-21, it was the best bets that appeared on 8-21 and 8-22 that was making all the profits over the first two seasons and therefore, removing 6-21 from the portfolio of systems didn’t seem like that a bad idea.

As you can see, the strong bets on 8-21 and 8-22 are doing rubbish this season and must be pulling down the performance of 6-21. Therefore, it is the weaker bets on 6-21 that are having a good season this season.

I know there are a number of subscribers who are only following system 6-21 as this was the system which was looking to create the highest ROC this season from these systems although it would never achieve the highest ROI (all things being equal with the combined systems!).  So far, this strategy hasn’t been too bad and although the ROI of 6.9% isn’t great, it is still a profit of 19.4pts. The recommended bank is 45pts this season, and therefore, this system has generated a ROC of 43% even though most of the best bets have been losing most of the season!

On the other hand, I know a number of subscribers are only following 7-22 and 8-22 this season as these traditionally provide the strongest bets and so far this system, these bets haven’t been winning. 7-22 has a betting bank of 35pts and is 8.4pts down, so 24% of the betting bank is gone at the moment.

It’s hard to know what has happened to the better bets this season on these ratings. System 7 and system 8 are to blame and they’ve taken a profitable set of ratings on system 6 and narrowed down the bets badly. System 6 hasn’t had the best season but even so, 7 and 8 should be doing better.

System 21 is showing a profit of 13.9% and a profit of 41.4pts this season. This is stunning for a base set of ratings and if I look quickly at the season target, the target was 30pts profit this season at an ROI of 6%! It is miles ahead of target and it is easily the best set of ratings so far this season. Historically though, the results have never been as good as this on system 21 and therefore, it is overachieving so far this season.

On the same note though, system 22 has taken these amazing bets and narrowed them down very badly. The highest value bets haven’t been winning and ultimately, this has meant that system 22 is struggling. We know 22 is a better system than 21 based on the first two seasons, so it is amazing that when system 21 has a stunning first half of the season, system 22 has struggled.

I think overall, the established systems have had a poor first half of the season although there are a couple of gems in amongst the poor results so far. System 21 has been a shining light and 6-21 isn’t doing too badly. On the other hand, 7,8,23 and therefore 7-21 thru to 8-22 have really been struggling.

I have hinted at this in previous posts and emails but never really expanded too much on this up until now. I suspect this will be the last season that we see these systems in their current guise. I’ve said this lots of times over the first couple of seasons but I strongly believe that every set of ratings has a shelve life. The first two algorithms were built on data from 2000/01 to 2007/8 and backtested on data from 2008/9 and 2009/10. They went live in 2010/11. I have NEVER touched these algorithms at all since as at the end of the day, why touch something that has never been broken?

However, I know there is a theory out there that says at the end of every season, you should recalibrate your algorithm, taking into account the data from the most recent season or at least, refitting the data to take into account more recent data. I have shied away from this so far as it basically means you are following a new system every season and therefore, you have to put an element of trust into the system builder that they don’t backfit a system or build a new system with new data that was worse than the previous system but I’m confident I’ve enough experience now to ensure if I rebuild the first two algorithms taking into account more data, I won’t fuc* it up!

I know of another football service monitored by the SBC that updates its algorithm every year and basically, recalibrates the system (or systems) every season. I also know another ratings service that has kept the same ratings since 2006 and has added continually to the ratings by adding additional rating factors and ultimately,  they just create new systems every season, whilst keeping track of the previous systems too.

Therefore, there is a precedent in the market for doing something and as I’ve said since day one at this game, the moment you standstill, your edge can vanish. Clearly, the edge on the first two algorithms hasn’t vanished and it is still there this season but the strength of the ratings has really been called into question this season so far. The strongest bets for the first two season aren’t the strongest bets now on the first two algorithms and therefore, questions must be asked I think and I think action needs to be taken.

I think the other thing to consider is that the new ratings this season (systems 41-42 although I can see the performance of 43 too) are behaving exactly like systems 6-8 and 21-22 in the first two seasons. I’d even go as far to say that systems 31-33 are behaving like the first two algorithms did but this is slightly complicated by the fact 31-33 didn’t have the best of seasons last season in their first season!

Basically, I think the younger the system is, the better it is likely to perform as the algorithm is built on more recent data and therefore, it’s probably asking a bit much of systems 6-8 and 21-22 to be as good this season as the first two seasons when none of the results from the last two season are included in the algorithms.

Of course, this is a massive change to what my current subscribers are familiar with and therefore, I’m not sure how people would feel about following a set of combined systems next season that would effectively be unproven but then again, the New Systems from this season would be in their second season next season!

So, I think that leads us onto the New Systems this season.  214.7pts profit from 2,069 bets on all 11 systems or on the combined systems, it is a profit of 109.5pts from 811 bets.

An exceptional performance and I am as excited about these systems as I was about the established systems in their first season. I think these systems won’t be as good as the established systems in terms of ROI but the advantage these New systems have over the Est Systems is turnover. System 7-22 has only had 46 bets this season and will be lucky to have 100 bets this season. System 32-42 which is the equivalent New system has had 100 bets already this season.  That’s a big difference and ultimately, this means that the ROC that can be achieved with these systems could be much better than the Est systems.

For example, system 33-41 has generated a profit of 22.9pts this season from 59 bets. The target profit for this system was 9pts this season, so it’s more than doubled that at the halfway stage. No guarantee of course it will finish with anywhere near this profit but the point is, the turnover on these systems is exceptional and therefore, it does mean that we can probably achieve higher ROC figures than on the Est systems going forward.

The thing that separated the Established Systems from every other football system in the market was their ability to find the best bets (until this season!) and ultimately, these New Systems are showing this same ability. 33 is better than 32 and 32 is better than 31. 42 is better than 41.  33-41 and 33-42 are sitting with ROIs of 38.8% and 31.4% so far this season. Although they are overachieving, there is every chance they could finish up with an ROI of around 20%+ this season and that would make them directly comparable with 8-21 and 8-22 in their first season. 

As I said above though, turnover is key. 8-22 has only had 162 bets in 2.5 seasons of live results. 33-42 has had 53 bets so far this season. Hence, 33-42 looks like it could achieve comparable returns to 8-22 but over a higher sample of bets than 8-22 could ever manage. That would make 33-42 a better system than 8-22 in my eyes (and in most people’s eyes I suspect).

Of course, as I have been all saying all season with these New Systems, this is their first season and it’s important we don’t get too carried away but so far, so good.

This leads us onto the Misc Systems.  Going into this season, I didn’t know what to expect. I had high hopes for these systems last season but they were frankly, very poor. They were so poor that I actually stopped following these systems in my betting portfolio last season but at the season end, when I analysed the results, they weren’t great but they weren’t exactly a disaster either.

I took the plunge with them again this season with variable stakes on each of the systems and so far, it has went OK. Placing 1pt win on each of the systems would have generated a profit of 119.8pts from 1051 bets. A very nice return for a set of 6 football systems and they have repaid my faith in them a little. I think this is probably about as good as these systems are and I see them as solid 5%-10% footie systems and in my eyes, these sort of systems have their place in a betting portfolio. They won’t make you rich, they won’t break your bank, at times, they can have a lot of bets and not make much money but long-term, I think these systems have an edge and a decent one at that.

The betting bank of TOX is only 45pts for example and so far this season, the system has a profit of 32.7pts. A very decent return and although I know a few subscribers have taken the plunge with these systems this season as part of their portfolio, I wish more subscribers had taken a chance with these instead of following the Est Systems which appear to be the systems everyone has latched onto.

I’ll quickly touch on the Under/Over systems. Going into the season, I had no faith in either system after a very up and down season last season when they proofed in the SBC forum and ultimately, I thought if they broke even this season, they’d be doing OK! Well, a profit of 6.9pts from 168 bets this season is only slightly better than break-even. Interestingly, the target profit on the Over system is only 10pts for the season and it is at 9pts already. Unfortunately, the Under system has struggled all season and is currently 2.4pts down!

I don’t think my lack of faith in these Under/Over systems has wavered too much since the season began and ultimately, I don’t like the systems and I’m not sure they have much on an edge. However, a few have people have contacted me to say they are following the systems and although they make not be huge profit makers, they are good for turnover on Betfair for commission purposes and they don’t do much damage and the odds can easily be achieved on average although on each game, they can drift or steam wildly from when I give the bets out.

I think that only leaves us with the Euro Systems. Not sure how I try to analyse these as so far, the results have been crazy on a week to week basis. However, at a high level, 87.7pts from 1,007 bets and for the combined systems, a profit of 33.6pts from 416 bets. An ROI of 8.7% for all systems and an ROI of 8.1% for the combined systems.

Now, this all looks fine and well but when you look at the results by system, it isn’t exactly going to plan.

Firstly, the base ratings are proving very profitable. If I’m honest, the ratings are doing better than I thought they would do! The first algorithm has a profit of 13.7% from 181 bets and the second algorithm has a profit of 12.2% from 194 bets. Combined, system E1-E6 has a profit of 15.4% from 159 bets.  So, all fantastic results and it’s just a case of narrowing down these bets to get the best bets.

And herein lies the issue with the Euro systems so far this season. E7 has basically taken 89 of the 194 bets (so roughly 50% of the bets) and turned a 23.7pt profit into a 5.2pt loss. That’s very difficult to do but not impossible as we’re seeing.

Therefore, E1-E7, E2-E7 and E3-E7 are all struggling this season due to E7 fuc*ing things up. However, the systems not involving E7 are doing great and therefore, the other 3 combined systems are doing well and are making up for the mess E7 is making.

The other interesting thing about the Euro systems is the AH returns are awful! It seems to be the case the bets either win or lose which is strange as we’ve had lots of weeks where there have been plenty of draws but overall, covering the draw doesn’t appear to work. Not unless it involves E7 though as ultimately, the combined systems involving E7 are doing better when covering the draw!

Very strange but as I said up the top, the Euro systems are probably only 1/3 of the way through the season and in their first season, it is hard to draw too many conclusions at the moment.

Personally, I’ve been quite disappointed with the Euro systems myself as they have been so up and down but as always, you don’t really understand a system and how it performs until you follow it. At the end of the season, if the Euro systems all end up profitable, I won’t care too much about the ups and downs during the season but when you are living and breathing the footie as I’m doing this season, seeing so many ups and downs does take its toll on you.

I think that summarises the season to date for all the systems. If I’m being honest, it has been a disappointing season and I expect the range of returns for those following is massive. I communicate with a lot of subscribers via email regularly and I know some subscribers who have won 400pts (they follow every bet) and I know others who have lost 25%-35% of their betting bank this season already! It is a wide range of outcomes.

One thing I’ve said at the end of the first two seasons is that I’ve learnt a lot during the season that has helped me in future seasons and I suspect many subscribers will feel the same way at the end of this season.  With hindsight, I maybe could have directed more people towards taking a chance on systems which had a lower ROI but would potentially provide plenty of diversification in their portfolio but then again, I spent all last season telling people that TOX, STOY and STOZ would be good systems and they did shi* last season. It would have taken a bit of a punt from me to tell people to follow them this season!

I think the error we have all made this season is we have got too sucked into the Est Systems. Yes, they had the best results going into this season but following 5 or 6 of these systems and none of the other 35 systems meant all the eggs were in one basket and ultimately, the Est Systems have struggled this season and people are now looking at the results of other systems and wondering what would have happened if they’d diversified a little more.

I think diversification is the key here. I diversified a fair bit this season but I did the same for the last two seasons and at the end of each season, there were many others following the systems that had much better P&Ls than me. Ultimately, I looked on in envy seeing the fact they’d followed 5% of the bets I’d followed,5% of the time I’d put in and yet, ended up with a better £ profit and an ROI 3-4 times what I had achieved. My ROI this season for my portfolio is only slightly down on the first two seasons even though I’ve had people tell me this is a disaster of a season.

OK, I think that finishes the review for the season to date.

Here’s the table all the live results on each system to date.

I won’t go into the same level of detail as above but I think it’s worth touching on the live system results to date.

The Established Systems have an ROI of 8.5% across 6,976 bets and the combined systems have an ROI of 12% now across 2,580 bets. It is disappointing that the combined systems are seeing a reduction in ROI as the service has managed to keep an ROI of 15%+ since inception but 12% isn’t a disaster.

Looking at the pattern of the system results, it is very good. You can see clearly that the filtering works as you work up the systems, you can see that the combined systems improve on the single systems and lastly, you can see that the best systems are the higher combined systems.

I do think it’s interesting that even after a shocking season so far, System 7-22 and system 8-22 continue with an ROI of 17.7% and 19.4% respectively. I know these systems are taking a bit of stick and I know people are pulling their hair out this season following these systems but based on the live results to date, it’s hard to be too critical. 

Overall, the Established Systems continue to look OK in the long-term and although the short-term is disappointing (e.g. this season),  it only accounts for around 20% of the live bets and needs to be kept in some sort of perspective.

The only difference between the live results and the season results for the New systems are systems 31-33. These 3 systems were alive last season. The systems struggled a little last season (system 33 was the only loss making system in the TFA portfolio last season) but if you look at the results for a season and a half now, I think they are highly respectable. 31has an ROI of 4.2%, 32 has an ROI of 9% and 33 has an ROI of 9.7%. Not the best systems I’ve ever seen but then again, it’s not too bad given the level of turnover we’re seeing on these systems.

I think this shows that systems do bounce back. System 33 looked useless all season last season, made a loss and yet, this season, the very same system (nothing has changed!) is showing an ROI of 36%! Shows the impact that variance can have and also shows why you need to keep a long-term view at this game.

The Misc systems are really interesting as they have a decent sample of bets now since they were live last season. Overall, an ROI of 8.1% across 2,846 bets. Again, it’s not an amazing return but I like these systems. They were poor last season even though they made a small profit and they are very solid this season at a time when other systems are struggling. I think these systems offer something a bit different and a few of these systems should probably be part of everyone’s portfolio.

The only other systems which were live last season were the Under/Over systems. They struggled last season, didn’t get anywhere near the 10% ROI I was aiming for and this season isn’t much better. Overall now, an ROI of 5.9% from 641 bets which isn’t great. It is clear so far though that the Over system is the better system of the two and an ROI of 8.4% across 312 live bets is a decent return.

Overall, the service has now proofed 14,558 system bets which have generated a profit of 1,210pts. This is an ROI of 8.3%.

When I started out at this game, I hoped to achieve an ROI of 10% across all system bets and ultimately, this has proven a step too far. I then thought to myself that if the combined systems could achieve 10% overall, this would be a nice compromise and so far, this is holding up well. If I look at the all the combined system bets (including all 6 Misc Systems which are combined systems of some sort), then it’s a profit of 10.2% across 6,653 bets.  

Let’s hope the next 5 months see a decent performance from the systems and this will make up for the season’s performance to date.