Comparison of profitability between Double Chance (DC) and Draw No Bet (DNB) markets

Frequent dilema of a bettor when placing bets is which market is more profitable, Double Chance or Draw No Bet.

DC odds are significantly lower than DNB odds, but your bet is winner even in the case of draw. DNB offers better odds, but too often will you get your bet void. Where is the balance between the two?

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A couple of years ago I found a nice analysis of these two markets, over there at The Footbal Analyst place. He found out that straight Home / Away betting was more profitable than DNB betting, while DNB, in turn, was more profitable than DC.

Looking at his article, I thought that he should have taken into consideration frequency of draws within certain league - more the draws you have, more bets will be voided, decreasing profit of DNB market. Therefore, my idea was that one cannot compare these two markets over any league - comparison must be based within single league, whose draw percentage can be estimated (when I say "draw percentage", I mean percent of draws to total number of matches).

Now that season 2012/2013 is over, I wanted to compare these two markets once again, and see how it has developed since The Football Analyst's article.

Results and odds are readily available, thanks to magnificent Football-Data.co.uk. I followed this method: I included every single game of the season, and calculated profit for DC and DNB separately, using Home/Draw/Away odds from Bet365, and then deriving DCV and DNB odds . Obviosly, losing terms are the same for both markets (i.e., if away team wins, both DC Home or Draw and DNB Home are losers), so losing bets were not taken into consideration. So, calculation of profits for 1X and Home DNB bets included all matches that ended as Home win or Draw; calculation of profits for X2 and Away DNB bets included all matches that ended as Away win or Draw.

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The tables below show breakdown of analyzed leagues, and displayed profit is based on 1 unit level stakes.

(Click to display larger image)

And as I expected, profitability of these two markets depend on number of draws - higher the frequency of draws, higher the profitability of DC bets and lower the profitability of DNB bets, and vice versa, as seen in chart below. With a couple of exceptions, chart shows that in leagues where draw occured in more than 28% of matches, DC bets would have been more profitable than DNB bets, while in leagues with draw frequency below 28%, one would better concentrate on DNB bets.

Exceptions are Portuguese and Dutch league, where DC was more profitable despite lower frequency of draws. Reasons that I can think about is that Portugal, along with Greece, has the lowest number of matches, so the sample size might not be sufficient, while Netherlands has the highest average number of goals, hence the odds for draw are higher than in other leagues, which affects odds on both markets; however, since DC bets win more frequently than DNB bets, increase in odds favours DC bets. So, with exception of these two leagues, it seems that draw frequency of 28% is threshold for DC bets to be more profitable than DNB bets.

As expected, frequency of draws depend on number of goals - as average number of goals increases, frequency of draws decreases, while there is no correlation between profitability of these two markets and average number of goals, as seen in charts below.