Even if you win 55% of your bets, you will come out ahead consistently. However, this is easier said than done and involves more than just reading and checking injury reports. If Paul the octopus selected all the winners of the recent soccer World Cup, picking the winning soccer teams should be just as easy, right? Wrong. If it were that easy, a lot of people would be making money and sportsbooks would have to close. If winning at soccer betting involves some knowledge, some strategy and, let’s face it, a bit of luck, it’s because the bookmakers set very strict lines for the games. However, if you keep the following tips in mind, you should improve your chances of winning.

Bet as soon as you can. Many of the sportsbooks post their lines as soon as they can and some offshore bookmakers do so on Sunday afternoon for the following week’s games. If you find a game and odds you like, make sure there are no serious injury issues for the team you choose. Bookmakers are not perfect and they can make mistakes when setting the line. Jump early before the high stakes kill the bugs.

Focus on a few teams. Because knowledge is important, by concentrating on just a few teams you can accumulate a substantial amount of knowledge that you can use to place your bets. Also limit your bets to just a few games every Sunday.

Avoid heavy favorites. The crowd loves favorites and will be quick to bet on them. However, they are not good options if you want to maintain your 55% winning bet average. Even if you win a few, the payouts will be small. The best strategy is to bet on the short-term underdogs because when you win, you usually win more than you staked.

Use totals judiciously. Totals set earlier in the week are generally based on fair weather predictions. In late-season games, rain or snow sometimes affects the score, and a strong wind almost always keeps the score low. In these conditions, you would do well to bet the Under

Classification of use of yards per play. One method of evaluating teams is to look at offensive yards gained per play and defensive yards given away per play. Teams that win more than they lose end up winning more games. Statistics are readily available and you can calculate the difference with a positive difference as an advantage. The general rule of thumb for calculating a point distribution from yardage differential is that every 0.15 yards is worth one point. A difference of 0.60 yards between the two teams is worth four points. As with all betting tools, use your other data and information to confirm your findings.

Don’t avoid pranksters. There is a common perception that teasers are scams and therefore best avoided. Under certain circumstances, an NFL cash-in that is a two-game accumulator may make sense.

Pay attention to injury reports. Read injury reports carefully to determine what difference it will make to the performance of your chosen team. Don’t just look at the key players because every guy on the team has to perform at his best.