Football season is fast approaching. In a couple of weeks, Arsenal and Leicester will be kicking off the English Premier League.
And on the 18th of August, Bayern Munich and Leverkusen will be opening this year’s Bundesliga, Germany’s primary football competition. We have dug into what this league involves to give you a guide on how to approach betting on the Bundesliga.
Bookmakers are already offering a wide range of betting markets, from outrights on who will win, to odds on the upcoming matches. So now is your chance to read up and enter the punters playing field.
The 2017/18 Bundesliga season begins August 18th, 2017 and will run through May 12th, 2018.
Below, we will go over how it works, the odds you should expect, and what information you should start looking up to put you in the best possible when looking for value bets.
Bundesliga, How It Started
Prior to the 1950s, German football was played at an amateur level, and tournaments were region-based. At this time, Germany, unlike other countries, had no national football team. Due to the Berlin wall, West and East Germany had their own separate leagues.
The English had the Premier League, the Spanish had La Liga. And Germany?
The call for the formation of a central professional league came when German teams started faring poorly against professional and national clubs from other countries. Their loss against Yugoslavia provided the impetus for the formation of Bundesliga.
Following the German reunification, the East German leagues were merged into the West German system.
The Bundesliga is now one of the top national leagues in the world. The German league currently ranks second in Europe according to UEFA’s league coefficient ranking, with Spain placing first.
The Bundesliga has the highest attendance of any sports league in the world, with an average of over 45,000 fans per game. It is also broadcasted on television in over 200 countries.
Teams that place in the upper echelons of the Bundesliga competes in the Champions League and Europa League, often making it to the latter or final stages of both international tournaments.
How Bundesliga Works
The Bundesliga sees 18 clubs contesting for the top stop. Each club plays 34-matches throughout the season, playing against every other club twice, once at home, and once away.
Teams are awarded three points for a win and one for a draw. The prizes go to the clubs that finish at the top of the Bundesliga table.
If teams have the same amount of points at the end of the season, the Bundesliga decides the ranking by looking at goals scored, head-to-head points, and other factors. If this still leaves the two teams on equal footing, there is a playoff.
Due to Germany’s strong UEFA coefficient ranking, the clubs that place in the top three of the competition get a ticket to the group stages of the Champions League.
The team that places fourth gets a chance to qualify for the playoff stage.
Fifth place guarantees a spot in the Europa League group stage, while the team that places sixth gets a chance to enter the league by competing in the third qualifying round.
Relegations and the Bundesliga 2
Similarly to the Premier League, the teams in the bottom two positions of the table after playing 34 games are automatically relegated to Bundesliga 2.
The team that finishes third from bottom (in 16th place) faces off the team who finishes third in the Bundesliga 2. The team that loses is relegated to Bundesliga 2, the winner gets a place in the Bundesliga 2.
Bundesliga 2 is the German equivalent of the English Champions League. It is a tier lower than the Bundesliga 1. Those who place in the top 2 places of the Bundesliga 2 get to compete in the Bundesliga 1.
Bundesliga: The Markets To Look At
Whether you want to bet on individual matches, or want to focus on long running outright markets, you will have no problem finding markets on the Bundesliga.
The most popular of these markets available are Head-to-head markets, where you can choose who do you think will win, or if the match will end up a draw.
Right now, as listed at William Hill, the odds for who will win the league are:
- Bayern Munich- 1.12
- Borussia Dortmund- 7.00
As you can see, Bayern Munich is leading by a large margin. Due to this, we suggest avoiding betting on the outrights for who will win, and look at other wagers offered by bookies.
With Bayern Munich dominating the Bundesliga time and time again, a plethora of Asian Handicaps is available.
This gives punters the ability to select the winner with the stronger teams handicapped. For a better understanding of handicaps, and how you can take advantage of them to make more profitable bets, click here.
Goal Total Over/Under: Totals betting is a lucrative way to bet when you can’t find an edge.
With a league as popular as the Bundesliga, learning something and getting an advantage over the majority is hard, so betting against the line tends to be very risky.
Unless you’re an expert in German football, and unless you’re willing to dedicate a significant amount of time doing research and finding patterns, we’d suggest you consider looking at totals over trying to find a value bet on head-to-heads.
Keep in mind the advice of veterans in the betting world to follow in their footsteps>>
A popular market is the ‘Winner Without Bayern’, where bookies offer punters the chance to vote on who they think will place highest. In these markets, Bayern Munich is removed from the equation.
Most sportsbooks will offers wagers on
- Who will place top 36
- Who will place top 6
- Who will place top 10
- The teams who will face relegation
- The team who will place last
- The team who will finish in 16th place, and thus have to compete in the play offs to stay in the Bundesliga for another year
These markets offer the opportunity to find lucrative value bets.
A team like Dortmund will definitely place top 6, but if you study the other teams, you may be able to identify teams that are not popular amongst bettors but have a good chance at finding themselves in the upper echelons of this league.
The same situation can be found with markets on who will face relegation. Look at context. Which teams are at a disadvantage? Are there injured key players? How was their performance over a couple of years - can you identify a pattern?
Research On The Bundesliga
With a top tier sporting league like the Bundesliga, public information and statistical analysis are vast and easily accessible.
This also means that the odds provided by bookmakers will reflect actual probability accurately. Unless you are conducting consistent and detailed analysis, it won’t be easy to find a value bet where the odds that an event occurs is more likely to happen than what is shown in the sportsbook.
There is, however, a lot of research you can do to get an advantage over the bookies in the markets mentioned before, namely in handicap markets and totals.
A number of resources can be used to find and compare statistics about the matches and teams in the Bundesliga are,
- Bettingexpert Clash
- Bundesliga Stats
- ESPN Bundesliga Stats
- Soccer Stats Bundesliga
- Bundesliga Stats WhoScored
How To Research And Make Profit
Below are some questions that you can use as a point of departure in your research:
What is home field advantage worth in the Bundesliga? Which teams fare better when playing home? Which teams fare better when playing away? What is the average score of teams when they play home and when they play away?
One important thing to remember:
Be specific. Apply the questions above to specific teams, and trace patterns.
Zoom onto one team and see how it fared against other teams over a large number of matches. For example, let’s pick Dortmund.
Look at how the team fared against Bayern Munich, against Bremen, Stuttgart, and other teams in previous leagues. Don’t just take 5 matches, look at as many matches as possible.
Obviously, more recent matches should have more weight. However, keep in mind that older matches may have a very similar situation to upcoming matches, so don’t disregard them.
Context is as important as recency.
We’ve compiled a list of the best bookmakers for the Premier League.
As they are both top tier tournaments, you can use this list to select which bookmakers you want to opt for when betting on the Bundesliga.
This article should give you a good indication of where you can find value bets and make a profit.
It is always harder to make a profit with top-tier sporting events, but if you do the right research, ask the right questions, and avoid common pitfalls, you will stand a good chance at outwitting the bookies.
Good luck, punters.