A decent question to ask about a football match.
I first asked this question back in the early 80′s to help resolve the problem of forecasting draws. I knew that if the outsider scored first the chance of a draw was higher, but just how often did this happen?
The answer was a lot more than I imagined. But slowly I began to gain an appreciation of why. Over the full 90 minutes one teams advantage tends to bear out against another, but it’s often slight. There are only 2.60 goals on average in a match and they are reasonably well distributed but with a bias. Therefore goals are a little random in the way they are scored and the chance of an outsider scoring first isn’t particularly uncommon. However the chance of them going on to win a match is.
You don’t need to look far for examples of outsiders scoring first. But last night we had a ‘special’ moment when Luxembourg, priced at 100 to win, scored first against Portugal. Luxembourg’s price crashed into from 100′s to just 12.50. That would have netted you a £70 profit from a £10 stake. You could have then laid the draw at 6 and exited at 10 or backed Portugal at 1.25. Anyhow, even if you just stuck with your first trade you would just need to find this in one in seven matches to profit.
OK the Luxembourg lead was off to the left a little, but the moral of this story; outsiders score much more often that you would think.