Shape – How to build a betting method

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Today we will approach the shape variable, what is it for, the importance of it in a sports event pricing and the factors we should take into consideration to evaluate and ponder it.


The shape is nothing more than the team’s performance in the last games, in other words this factor serves to take the coldness out of the numbers.

It is a factor that is undoubtedly essential in a qualitative study of an event, because we are watching with clarity a team’s situation on the field and once again the power of interpretation here leaves us one step ahead of the market.

We are already tired of watching games who finish with a “misleading” result, for instance when a team plays badly and still wins the game or when there is team that dominates almost the whole game and still can’t get out with the 3 points.

Nothing against analyzing the last games of a team, is a factor that also should not be left aside and that can tell us some important things about that team, but we know that if well used, the shape can let us extract “milk from the stone” of a sporting event.

Another extremely important detail is that, the whole situation of previous matches has to be evaluated to give weight to this factor. It is of no use if a team plays well against inferior and defensive teams, and we take this with the same weight as a situation where the team faces offensive teams of the same technical quality or even better and cannot perform well, as well as the motivation and absences of these matches that also have to be taken into consideration.

I advise to write everything in an excel if possible (I recommend to use the last 6 games) if not, then write down in a notebook as the important thing is to take the situation into consideration.

To know how the team has been playing at home/away is fundamental. There will be teams that will be offensive at home and defensive away and vice-versa… so to have control over this information is of great value.

Last but not least, we have the key players of the team. Here it is relevant to look at their behavior on and off the pitch. Evaluate how thay have been playing, that is if they are performing above average or not and if their psychological/emotional is in balance.


Defensive sector:

Here we observe and write down how the defensive sector has been playing in the last games, here I take into consideration the defenders behaviour on the field, how the chances that your opponent creates on the field are really created and how often this happens in the match.

Another point to observe is if there is any important player in the defensive part, if so, we should observe wether he is being a true sheriff in his defense or if he is performing badly, here we have a strong weight in our analysis.

Creation sector/Midfield
Here we evaluate how the team’s midfielders have been performing, for instance if they are easily creating plays, or if they are having difficulties playing in the style proposed by the team.


Teams that like to play in the offensive sector tend to touch the ball more from one side to the other in search of finding a gap in the opponent’s defense and so they demand a little more in their creative sector.

Defensive teams depend less on the creation, but they still should have that number 10 key player to put the ball in its proper place. An example of a good team like this was Tite’s Corinthians, Champion of the Brazilian Serie A in 2015, that had Jadson as number 10 in great phase and as key player in the creation sector.

It’s fundamental to take into consideration the opponent’s technique in all sectors logically… so that we can have a bigger control over the average of the weights, however this is like the variable’s backbone in my opinion, because the opponent’s style of play can arise from his technical ability, and whether he’s playing or not in his domains.

Offensive Sector

Here we don’t have much to talk about… let’s consider here how the team defines its moves, checking the wingers behavior up to the killer striker.

There will be teams that will explore their wingers amplitudes in order to finish the play most of the times with an header, or at least with balls sent into the area exploring the crosses from the byline, waiting for the striker to put the ball into the net for example.

Lower teams usually explore this type of play by giving amplitude and depth to their wingers in order to define the play since they don’t have enough strength to keep the ball and set up another type of play.


We concluded that having control of this variable is very important to find +EV in the odds offered by the bookmakers. Knowing that they count with thousands of data… algorithms… in order to reach an exact probability of an event, there is nothing better than to deconstruct the numbers to our side.

I tried to go as deep as I could in this variable article, citing every detail that I think is important so that you can create your own shape factor analysis.

I once again repeat that the way we see a game is something personal… we can and will have different interpretations of a football match so what you have to do here is not just stay in the theory and go to practice.

I don’t believe that you should interpret as correctly as possible right in the first game, second game and so on… it takes some time and the more dedication and league specialization the better.

For last I want to emphasize that if it is not possible to watch all the matches of the round, watch the sports programs, watch the highlights of the games… reports… statistics of the games as for example dangerous attacks, ball possession and shots on target… go easy and don’t put pressure on yourself.

Anyway my friends, I really hope this article will be useful for you… hugs and see you next time!

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