Polytechnic University of Valencia Congress, CARMA 2020 - 3rd International Conference on Advanced Research Methods and Analytics

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Investigating inefficiencies of bookmaker odds in football using machine learning
Benedikt Mangold, Johannes Stübinger

Last modified: 14-05-2020


The efficient-market hypothesis states that it is impossible to beat the market, as the price reflects all available information. Applied to bookmaker odds for football games, there should not be a systematic way of winning money on the long run.
However, we show that by using simple machine learning models we can systematically outperform the markets belief manifested through the bookmakers odds. The effect of this inefficiency is diminishing over time, which indicates that the knowledge that has been derived from and the pure amount of the data is also reflected in the odds in recent times.
We give some insights how this effect differs across major football leagues in Europe, which algorithms are performing best and statistics on the ROI using machine learning in football betting. Additionally, we share how the simulation study has been designed in more detail.

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