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Many soccer punters avoid Asian Handicap betting without ever fully grasping the concept. Once you understand the basics it can add a whole new dimension to your football betting, especially as the option of a draw is eliminated from the equation.

Quite simply, an Asian Handicap (which was originally termed 'hang cheng betting' by bookmakers in Asia) is another way of describing spread betting in soccer. It reduces the possible number of outcomes from three (home win, away win or draw) to two, by eliminating the draw outcome.

The bookmakers essentially assign a handicap or “line” for the perceived weaker team in the fixture in order to bring the odds for each team close to evens. The handicap lines start at 0 and can go as high as 4 in some cases. The handicap is devised by weighing up the apportioning the variation in the odds of each team winning. 


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There are three types of Asian Handicap bets in football which I will now outline, in basic terms:


1. Full goal handicaps: The two teams start with a whole number handicap separating them,


Arsenal is favoured to beat Wigan, with the handicap set as Arsenal-1.0 and Wigan+1.0.

If you bet on Arsenal-1.0, you win your bet if Arsenal win by 2 or more goals, lose if Arsenal draw or lose the game, and have your stake refunded if Arsenal win by exactly one goal.


FREE membership to football tips, soccer picks and betting advice2Half goal handicaps: The possibility of a draw is eliminated and the bet is either won or lost (there are no stake refunds).


Chelsea is favoured to beat Blackburn, with the handicap set as Chelsea-1.5 and Blackburn+1.5.

If you bet on Chelsea-1.5, you win your bet if Chelsea win by 2 or more goals and lose if the game ends in any other scenario.


Check our excellent strike rate of winning soccer tips3. Quarter goal handicaps: This is more complicated and it’s essential that you understand the two concepts already explained.

Basically two types of bets are combined here - one half goal bet and one full goal bet. So, for example, if you stake $100 on Barcelona-0.75; the bet actually comprises of $50 on a Barcelona-0.5 handicap and a further $50 on a Barcelona-1.0 handicap. Depending on the outcome, half of your stake may win and the other half may be refunded.


Of course the best way to familiarize yourself with this or any other type of soccer betting is to experiment, albeit with smaller stakes until you become more experienced. The elimination of the draw is a significant advantage, but so too are increased odds available on the favourites if you predict them winning by a couple of goals. For weekly Asian Handicap football betting tips among others, visit our home page today.



If the summer break from European football has left you feeling empty then don’t despair. Brazil’s top flight, which kicks off this Saturday, is an exciting league which has seen six different teams finishing in the top three positions over the past two campaigns, both of which have been decided on the last day of the season. From a betting perspective there is plenty of value available in a league where home advantage is fundamental. So who are the main contenders in the race for being crowned champions of the 2011 Campeonato? Who are the teams to watch and who are the key players who may prove the difference when the Serie A title is decided in December?  Here are six teams, in no particular order, which in my opinion will be in the mix and challenging for honours at the business end of the season.



Having led the competition for the majority of last season, Corinthians were disappointed to end up in third place at the finish line. However, for a team that was promoted from the Serie B in 2008 and finished tenth in the Serie A in 2009, last year’s third place finish was a magnificent result. Interesting to note is the fact that of the 19 games they played at home last season, Corinthians won 15.

Free soccer tips and football betting advicePlayer to Watch: Bruno Cesar

The 22 year old midfielder was the third top scorer in the Serie A last season, weighing in with an impressive 14 goals which any striker would be proud of. It will be interesting to see how he links up with centre forward Adriano, who has returned to Brazil after a short but shambolic spell with Italian side Roma.



Hailing from Belo Horizonte in Minas Gerais, Cruzeiro have been one of the most consistent teams over the past four seasons, finishing in fifth, third, fourth and second places respectively (in 2010 they finished only two points behind champions Fluminense). Having last won the Campeonato in 2003, the same year they became the only Brazilian side to win a domestic treble, expectations will be high amongst home supporters that this season could be their year.

Free soccer tips and football betting advicePlayer to Watch: Thiago Ribeiro

Top scorer in the 2010 Copa Libertadores with 8 goals, the 25 year old striker will be a vital cog in Cruzeiro’s assault on the title. A recent run of 10 goals in 9 games in the Copa and Campeonato Mineiro in April/May suggests this could be a huge year for the Brazilian born attacker.



Having finished in third and fifth places in 2007 and 2008, Flamengo of Rio de Janeiro finally won the title after a barren period of seventeen years in 2009. This was followed by a terrible fourteenth place finish last season. Whether or not they can improve drastically enough to reclaim the title this season is debatable, but one player could have a huge say in this.

Expert soccer tips by professional football tipsterPlayer to Watch: Ronaldinho

The 31 year old world cup winner and twice FIFA World Player of the Year has returned home after five seasons with Barcelona and three with AC Milan. He was an integral part of current Italian  champions AC Milan’s side before leaving for Brazil in January and will be the focal point of this Flamengo side in the 2011 Campeonato.



After finishing in fourteenth place in 2008 and sixteenth place in 2009, Fluminense surprised everyone by being crowned champions in the 2010 season. They have retained their most inspirational players for the upcoming season and are very much title contenders in 2011.

Expert soccer tips by professional football tipsterPlayer to Watch: Dario Conca

While striker Fred will be the main provider of goals,arguably the player most important to Fluminense’s cause is Argentinean midfielder Dario Conca. The 28 year old is at the peak of his career and was named the Campeonato’s player of the season last year. As well as creating goals he scored an impressive nine times from midfield in the 2010 season and his input could again prove the difference this year.



With top four finishes in three of the past five seasons, Gremio are seeking their first title since 1996. Fourth last year, but only eight points behind the victors, they have scored more goals at home over the past two seasons than any other side, winning 25 of their 38 home games in 2009 and 2010. If they can improve marginally on their away from they could well be contenders this year.

Profitable soccer tips, picks and predictionsPlayer to Watch: Andre Lima

With the departure of Jonas, the Campeonato’s top scorer with 23 goals in 2010, it’s time for Andre Lima to shine. Eleven goals last year was a respectable tally for the 26 year old striker, but with the gaping void left by Jonas, he now has the opportunity to become a cult hero with home fans by helping Gremio to go all the way.



Winners in 2006, 2007 and 2008, Sao Paulo finished the last two seasons in third and ninth places respectively. Last year looks to be a blip more than a loss of form and this club harbours high expectations of reclaiming the Serie A title this season.

Profitable soccer tips, picks and predictionsPlayer to Watch: Luis Fabiano

Returning to the club he left in 2004, 30 year old striker Luis Fabiano has signed from Sevilla in time for the 2011 Campeonato. He scored 66 goals in his last four seasons in the Spanish Primera and a similar strike rate with his old club could be the difference between a top six finish and contending for the title.


It really does appear that a number of teams can finish top of the pile in 2011. From a punting perspective keep in mind that, similar to the MLS in the United States, the large distances travelled by teams to play away games has a dramatic effect on the home and away records of each club in Brazil’s Serie A. The result of this is a higher than usual home win percentage record (and therefore a higher away loss percentage record) over the duration of the season. Added to this is the excellent value on offer in the betting markets. I can only speculate that a lack of popularity in the Campeonato betting markets is a major factor in this, but from experience over the past three seasons I’ve found excellent value time and again, even when top three sides host a bottom third side. When such a fixture arises in England (think Chelsea v Birmingham), odds quoted will approximate 1.25 to 1.30 for a home win, while a similar game in Brazil tends to return 1.45 to 1.50. This becomes significant over the course of a 38 game season so don’t miss out! To register and receive winning Brazilian selections, as well as other expert soccer tips, visit our home page.



Check results of our legitimate soccer tips by our professional football tipster I was delighted to read that three members of a soccer betting ring are about to serve time in prison, following a lengthy investigation into what officials have described as the biggest football match-fixing scandal to have hit Europe. The sentences handed out in Bochum, Germany are only the tip of the iceberg, as it’s estimated that there are another 300 or so suspects being investigated. 

All three defendants were presented with sentences of between three and four years. They pleaded guilty to betting on soccer matches they knew had been fixed, and to bribing players involved in certain games. Two of the three men were bookmakers while the third man, known as ‘Tuna A’, was identified as a gambler. Both of the bookmakers had developed relationships with football players over a period of time. These relationships were clearly “manipulative”, as pointed out by Judge Carsten Schwadrat. The men were charged with fixing at least eighteen soccer matches, up to as high as level as Europa League standard.

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The three men had apparently been involved in the sordid world of fixing outcomes of football matches for several years. Sentences will also shortly be handed out to another seven defendants, including Ante Sapina, the mastermind behind a German match-fixing ring who was sentenced to three years imprisonment in 2005. Sapina only served one third of that sentence and told the court that after his release he wagered sums of money on games that had been manipulated, shortly after the 2006 World Cup.

Plying a trade as a football tipster is difficult enough without competing against the filthy obstacle that is match-fixing. The fact that the punishment being meted out is as severe as three or fours years imprisonment will surely thwart future offenders and eliminate this blight from the beautiful game. In the meantime perhaps I (with tongue firmly placed in cheek) can deny responsibility for any incorrect soccer tips I’ve provided in the past year, and claim that these blemishes on my record as a tipster have been the result of a vile European match-fixing ring.

For further details on how you can profit from our free soccer tips, football picks and soccer betting advice, visit our home page and read about our excellent soccer tipping service.



The 2011 United States Major Soccer League will commence in mid March and has inspired me to research and validate a couple of points that I have believed for a while now:

1. The MLS has a higher percentage of home wins than most other leagues.

2. The betting markets covering the MLS offer greater value than markets that cover most other leagues.

If both these statements are true, then their combination leads to the inevitable conclusion that betting on the MLS is a must for all serious soccer punters.

For comparative purposes I’ve studied results in the MLS over the last five seasons and compared against the English Premier League. The English top flight is the most watched league in the world and probably the league that generates the most turnover with bookmakers. For this reason it works well as a comparative with the MLS.

The first point regarding the high percentage of home wins is something that I’ve noticed over the past few years. Obviously football results favour the home team as a rule, irrespective of the league or competition. In the MLS I began to notice, however, that results seem to favour the home teams even more than what I would consider to be normal. Average sides or sides towards the bottom of the table still manage to possess a reasonable home record. In order to set about illustrating this point I’ve compared results for both the MLS and English Premier League for the five seasons from 2006 to 2010.

As I wanted to illustrate how the trend is more significant for mid to lower side teams, I excluded the top third percentile from each season. This is reasonable when you consider that the top six or seven teams in the Premier League always possess strong home records. The same is true in all leagues, whether in Italy, Spain, Germany or the USA. I worked out the home win percentage for teams in the bottom two thirds percentile and calculated the average percentage. My findings were significant as the table in Figure 1 demonstrates.

Fig 1. Home Win Ratio excluding Top Third Percentile






















The table illustrates that in each of the last five seasons, the home win ratio was higher in the MLS than in the English Premier League. Averaging out the home win percentage over five seasons sees a 5% variance between the two leagues, which, when you consider the amount of games played over five seasons, is a significant difference. Without bombarding you with numbers, another interesting statistic is that over five seasons, the team that finished bottom of the MSL had an average home win ratio of 30%. In the EPL the same study shows the team at the bottom had an average home win ration of 18%.  

What is the reason for the significantly better home record of teams in the USA? It’s open to debate but one obvious reason is the geographical spread of teams in the MLS. The San Jose Earthquakes are required to travel over 3,000 kms to play Chicago, while LA Galaxy are separated from Washington DC by over 4,300 kms. Often teams will go on the road for a period of time, playing up to three away games in succession. These periods of extended travel and being away from home for weeks on end surely take their toll. 

And so to the second point – that the markets covering the MLS offer more attractive odds than most other leagues. This isn’t as easy to illustrate, given that odds at the time a match was played aren’t readily available. However I have a record of many MSL bets / tips over the 2010 season which validate my statement, especially when compared with odds available for similar type fixtures in the EPL. Take the following two matches:

1. July 2nd 2010: Real Salt Lake v New England

Coming into this match Salt Lake had a home record of five wins and two draws. They were also second only to LA Galaxy in the league. New England’s six away games had resulted in five defeats, with their sole away win coming over bottom of the table DC United. They were the 4th worst team in the league at that point.

For comparative purposes imagine say Arsenal or Manchester City playing at home to Wigan or Birmingham. The odds on offer for a home win would most likely be in the 1.30 – 1.40 region. Real Salt Lake were priced at a very generous 1.65 in the above fixture, which they won 5-0.

2. Sept 17th 2010: LA Galaxy v DC United

The best team and top of the Western Conference played at home against the worst team who were bottom of the Eastern Conference. Galaxy had won seven of their eleven home games prior to this game, while DC United had lost eight of their twelve away games at that point. Can you imagine what odds would be available if the top team in the English Premier League (or any other league) hosted the team at the foot of the table? Best odds on offer would be around 1.15 to 1.20, if even that. LA Galaxy were quoted at 1.50 to beat DC United, which they did, by 2 goals to 1.

There are plenty more scenarios similar to the fixtures above with which I won’t bore you. I think you’ll agree that the variance in odds for home wins in these examples indicate just how attractive odds can be in the MLS betting market. Perhaps it’s a question of a lack of interest in betting on American soccer, in comparison with the huge number of bets placed on European fixtures. However the reason itself isn’t of great importance. The message is clear. The MLS has a higher home win ratio than most other leagues and the MLS betting market offers significantly higher odds for the home team. You’ll see for yourself when the league kicks off on March 15th. Go to our home page to become a member and receive our free soccer tips, football picks and betting advice.



An investigation is currently underway in the UK regarding suspicious betting on an SPL clash between Motherwell and Hearts last week. Motherwell midfielder Steve Jennings was shown a straight red with seven minutes to go at Fir Park for comments made to referee Stevie O’ Reilly. Betting firm Blue Square later revealed that during the game a punter had set up a new account, placed ₤ 200 on a sending off at odds of 10-1 and was later denied further attempts to wager more money on the same bet. Other bookmaking firms have also reported irregular activity on the red card market for the match. Jennings has maintained his innocence, with Motherwell publicly supporting their midfielder, who insists that nothing improper took place. The investigation, now over a week old, looks like being a lengthy one, with the SFA refusing to comment on findings so far.

It seems inevitable that corruption will now and again rear its ugly head in the world of soccer betting. With the popularity of the game and the ever-growing interest in online soccer tipping and betting sites, the stakes being wagered have reached an all time high. Of course the vast majority of these punters are just like you or I, trying to make a bit of extra cash on the side by betting on the game we love. In recent years, however, there have been stories of high level gambling syndicates who are trying to corrupt the beautiful game. In some instances they are succeeding, with players and officials getting involved. As if we haven’t enough to consider before placing our bets with form, weather, injuries, etc. Do we really have to wonder about the validity of the game and the morality of the players? Let’s delve into the archives to look at some recent betting scandals that have left a black cloud hanging over the football world.

Goalkeeper takes a dive – In 1993 Liverpool goalkeeper Bruce Grobbelaar was caught on videotape discussing match-fixing with a gambling syndicate. He, along with the Wimbledon goalkeeper Hans Segers, Aston Villa striker John Fashanu and a Malaysian businessman, was charged with conspiracy to corrupt the national English sport. He was accused of taking £40,000 to ensure that Liverpool lost to Newcastle, as well as trying, unsuccesfully, to lose a match between Liverpool and Manchester United. Grobbelaar’s ridiculous defense was that he was simply gathering evidence to go to the police, and two separate trials resulted in the juries failing to reach a verdict. The Durban-born goalkeeper was ultimately cleared, but his reputation was so tarnished that, when he sued the Sun for libel, Lord Bingham ruled that he was not damaged by the allegations and if anything he had knowingly tried to place a huge blemish on the game so passionately followed by millions. He was subsequently forced to pay for the Sun’s legal bills.

Floodlight failure – There were two occurrences of floodlight failure in the 1997 season of the English Premier League. The first came when West Ham played Crystal Palace and the floodlights suddenly failed after the Hammers had equalised. The second floodlight failure happened when Wimbledon played Arsenal and the lights failed after half time with the scores also level. If a game was abandoned with the scores level then the result would stand as far as betting was concerned. A Malaysian syndicate had bribed inside staff to tamper with the electrics and stood to make a reported £30 million from the outcomes. They came unstuck during a third attempt at floodlight tampering when they tried to bribe a Charlton staff member who let the cat out of the bag.

2005 Bundesliga referees - In January 2005, German prosecutors and the German Football Association started separate inquiries into charges that a referee had fixed and bet on various matches including a German cup tie. Later the referee in question, Robert Hoyzer, admitted the allegations. There were reports of links with the notorious Croat gambling gang. Further investigations revealed that he had actually been involved in fixing more matches than he had originally admitted. On February 12th he was arrested and a lifetime ban has been imposed on him by the DFB. On March 10th, police arrested Dominik Marks, another German referee, for being involved in match fixing. Hoyzer was sentenced to prison for two years and five months.

2006 Serie A Scandal – In 2006 a match fixing scandal was uncovered by Italian police involving league champions Juventus and challengers Lazio, Fiorentina and AC Milan. Teams had apparently managed to choose favourable referees for their matches, thus increasing their chances of winning. Italian World Cup goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon was also accused for staking money on football matches. All four clubs were denied entry in the European club competition in 2006-2007. Champions Juventus were hardest hit as they were relegated to the Serie B and stripped of their previous two Serie A titles.

2009 Germany and Turkey - In November 2009 German police arrested 17 people in a match fixing scandal that hit leagues in nine different countries, including Germany, Turkey and Switzerland. Of the 24 matches that prosecutors say were fixed, 10 were in Germany. Phone taps along with 50 raids conducted in November unfurled evidence pointing to 200 suspects. The accused had profited to the tune of several million euros, the majority of which was earned by placing large bets in Asia via agents based in London. The same case led to Turkish police arresting 46 people in 26 towns and cities across the country. Among those detained were a number of well-known players and coaches, including Arif Erdem, one of Turkey's most famous international players. It is believed the gamblers made at least 10 million euros on the games.

These are some of the more high profile cases which have arisen in recent years. The good news is that the majority of players, coaches and staff are interested in playing football and winning fairly. Being a team sport makes fixing matches for favourable soccer betting outcomes difficult. With eleven men on each team, the chances of one player significantly altering the outcome are improbable. I will be very interested to hear the outcome of the Steve Jennings red card investigation. Regardless of the findings, I think that match fixing, disgusting as it is, does not occur frequently enough to take into account when analysing games to produce soccer tips for betting. Visit our home page to find out more about how you can profit from our free soccer tips and football betting advice.

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Hallescher  v  Karlsruhe GERMANY 3 LIGA  8 December 2012

Our next pick comes from the third tier of German football, where I'm tipping Karlsruhe (who provided us with a win last weekend) to continue their excellent form today. They have now moved up to third place thanks to a superb winning streak of seven consecutive league games (the last three wins were by a margin of 3 or more goals). Today they travel to play an inconsistent Hallescher side that haven't won at home since August. Their home record currently stands at 2.3.4 and they sit just 2 points clear of the relegation zone before kick off. Karlsruhe have won four and drawn two of their last six league games on the road and the free scoring side look great value to do the business today. Odds for a Karlsruhe victory are too good to overlook and seem to have been overpriced by the bookmakers. Away win. 

 Verdict:     Away win at $2.10   Outcome:  WIN  Result 0-2

Soccer Goals at night