The Football Code - MB & Smartodds story

Pauly Paul

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Just saw a tweet promoting a new book by ex-Smartodds employee James Tippett.

https://www.thefootballcode.com/sin...-will-Change-How-You-Watch-the-Beautiful-Game

What is the book about?

The Football Code promotes an innovative, ground-breaking footballing philosophy. It seeks to address the intrinsic errors and inefficiencies which plague the sport, whilst at the same time revealing the top secret methods that professional gambling syndicates use to predict the outcome of football matches.

Whilst the book does advocate a more analytical approach to the sport, even the most mathematically unaware would find it easily accessible. The main aim is to disclose a new way of thinking about the beautiful game. The contents reveal a smarter approach to the sport; a new, more intelligent language with which we can discuss football.

The Football Code truly will change the way you watch football. Any fan who doesn't read it will be left behind.

What issues does the book address?

The first half of the book studies the flaws in our ability to accurately assess the sport of football. It looks at basic statistical illusions which regularly trick us. It outlines how our biases, both natural and artificial, can hinder us when it comes judging team, player or manager performance. It also reveals that pundits are actually the worst forecasters of the sport, and studies why this is the case.

The second half reveals new, ground-breaking methods which we can use to make better footballing predictions. It discloses how to best go about beating the bookmakers, and the approach that professional gamblers use to make their millions. It studies a revolutionary metric that looks set to change the way we watch football. Finally, it reveals how one man has used an innovative (and easily adoptable) approach to make millions in the betting markets, and to guide the football club he owns to unparalleled success.

Who would find The Football Code useful?

The book promotes a revolutionary approach to the sport. Thus, it would help any fan of football better understand the beautiful game. By revealing what actually makes some teams better than others, it facilitates a smarter mindset to analyse players, teams and managers.

Obviously, being able to accurately assess which teams and players are the best opens many doorways. Fantasy football managers will be able to win more points. Football pundits will be able to provide better commentary. Even those who play video games such as Fifa and Football Manager will be able to use The Football Code's system to assess their own ability.

Where does the book's radical philosophy originate from?

The approach which is outlined in the book stems from a less well-known football team. Perhaps this is to be expected. Rich teams have no need to become smarter, they can win by simply outspending the opposition. Goliath has no need to use his brain when he can defeat David with brawn.

Brentford FC are a comparatively small club in South West London. They realised that they cannot defeat their opponents with financial brawn, so have developed an innovative means of operating in an attempt to level the playing field.

This approach stems from their owner, Matthew Benham. Since Benham took over in 2012, the club has been transformed from a mid-table League One team into one gunning for promotion to the Premier League. Despite having the playing budget of a side who should be fighting relegation, the Bees have achieved three consecutive top ten Championship finishes.

How does Benham's system work?

Benham founded a statistical analysis company called Smartodds in 2005. This company collect unique, ground-breaking match data, and have used it to make a fortune in the gambling markets. This system of data collection is one of the chief revelations of The Football Code.

As well as allowing Smartodds to turn over hundreds of millions of pounds a year, the data is used by Benham to recruit players for Brentford FC. This has allowed the West London outfit to sign several high quality players for rock bottom prices.

By being able to spot the diamonds in the rough (players who are drastically undervalued by the rest of the footballing world), Benham has been able to continuously upgrade the ability of Brentford's playing staff.

Who is the author?

James Tippett worked at Smartodds for over a year, during which time he watched more than 300 matches of football. He was trained in the company's unique methods of data collection, based on the Expected Goals method.

Having written The Football Code, Tippett met with Benham's lawyers to determine what he could and couldn't publish about their secret means of operating. Finally, almost two years after the project was started, the book is being made available on Amazon from September 7th.
 

FlyBee

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Houghton Bee

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Brentford in South West London?

I'm out.
 

Silly Chip

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Looks like an interesting read. I've bought some bland books over the years which promise to make you a better gambler :( Even forking out for this will be only the cost of a typical bad bet.
 

jlove

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Well, the Sample Chapter doesn't exactly tell us much we don't already know

When you write "us", are you including everyone? I guess those that don't already know are not going to read it, though!
 

Banana

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When you write "us", are you including everyone? I guess those that don't already know are not going to read it, though!
i mean the likes of you and me. Who else would be interested?
 

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"Whilst the success of Brentford and Midtjylland may seem insignificant when compared to the giants of the sport, they are two of the most overachieving sides in the whole of Europe."

Liked this bit.
 

PhilE

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Arry's just been seen in Waterstones.

Was told some Brentford players were seen in there.

In fairness I don't think this approach would appeal to him - too much like hard work.
 
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Let's not forget Arry swore he didn't know how to use a computer. A few months later, and presumably after a crash course he was pictured with a monitor and keyboard on his desk.
 
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Really interested in this.

Firstly I would be amazed if all Smartodds employees did not have to sign confidentiality agreements and that these would remain in force after their departure.

Knudsen has hinted at what went on during his time at the club but never written more than the odd article.

I also approached the club about writing a book about their methodology and approach and following Smith and Giles etc for a year and was given very short shrift as they just did not want the publicity - and I quite understood their decision.

That's why the Bob Booker story was written instead!

I will buy this book with interest.
 

mhead bee

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I also approached the club about writing a book about their methodology and approach and following Smith and Giles etc for a year and was given very short shrift as they just did not want the publicity - and I quite understood their decision.

That's why the Bob Booker story was written instead!
.

I don't know why that made me laugh but it did :)


I agree with an earlier post, if this guy is writing a book about how to win a fortune at gambling and fantasy football why does he feel the need to write a book at all...surely he has his income covered already? Sounds like a turncoat to me. Maybe I am wrong and it will be a fascinating insight without giving the formula away.
 

Roving Bee

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I agree with an earlier post, if this guy is writing a book about how to win a fortune at gambling and fantasy football why does he feel the need to write a book at all...surely he has his income covered already? Sounds like a turncoat to me. Maybe I am wrong and it will be a fascinating insight without giving the formula away.

Do you remember Horis Bachelor in the 60's always banging on about his method for winning the pools. Made a fortune selling the system, but I did always wonder if it was so good why he didn't use it to make his fortune and stop bleating on about it every 5 minutes on Radio Luxembourg.
 

rebus

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No doubt also the system Smartodds were using has changed since he moved on.

Knutson can't have signed a DNA after he left as he can't keep his mouth shut about his time at Brentford when he won us the Champions League by himself.
 
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No doubt also the system Smartodds were using has changed since he moved on.

Knutson can't have signed a DNA after he left as he can't keep his mouth shut about his time at Brentford when he won us the Champions League by himself.

NDA I think!!!
 

Silly Chip

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No doubt also the system Smartodds were using has changed since he moved on.

Surely it's not just the system but the manpower required to keep the huge amounts of data up to date? Reading the book will no doubt give an insight but individuals will still need to buy the data to be successful? The free stats I see per game are shots and shots on target, but the Expected Goal Ratio is based on the position of the player when he took the shot. I wish Mr Benham would sell tips at a discounted rate to interested Bees fans :(
 

psg150

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Was told some Brentford players were seen in there.

In fairness I don't think this approach would appeal to him - too much like hard work.

Some big words in that book too.
 

Houghton Bee

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Surely it's not just the system but the manpower required to keep the huge amounts of data up to date? Reading the book will no doubt give an insight but individuals will still need to buy the data to be successful? The free stats I see per game are shots and shots on target, but the Expected Goal Ratio is based on the position of the player when he took the shot. I wish Mr Benham would sell tips at a discounted rate to interested Bees fans :(

He has never posted a single tip in the gambling forum. Bees fan my arse, Benham out :nono:
 

-superbees2k3-

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I can't understand how this wouldn't be a breach of confidentiality unless its seriously lacking in any details we don't already know
 
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I can't understand how this wouldn't be a breach of confidentiality unless its seriously lacking in any details we don't already know

As many posters have expressed concerns similar to yours, I will quote from the original post...

Having written The Football Code, Tippett met with Benham's lawyers to determine what he could and couldn't publish about their secret means of operating. Finally, almost two years after the project was started, the book is being made available on Amazon from September 7th.
 

wibs

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Do you remember Horis Bachelor in the 60's always banging on about his method for winning the pools. Made a fortune selling the system, but I did always wonder if it was so good why he didn't use it to make his fortune and stop bleating on about it every 5 minutes on Radio Luxembourg.

Proper old school post
 

hanworthbee

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The author is on the latest beesotted pod that's up today....the whole show is basically devoted to him and it's an excellent listen.
 

BerksBee

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The author is on the latest beesotted pod that's up today....the whole show is basically devoted to him and it's an excellent listen.
Yes it's fascinating.

The author of that book talking about and explaining the xG metric and how important that's now become in terms of accessing just how good and how well a team are playing. Based on that, he reckons we should be in 8th place in the division! Also saying, we've been extremely unlucky so far.

Football analyst discusses how Brentford's £172k weekly wave bill competes with Aston Villa's £950k
 

essexbees

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Yes it's fascinating.

The author of that book talking about and explaining the xG metric and how important that's now become in terms of accessing just how good and how well a team are playing. Based on that, he reckons we should be in 8th place in the division! Also saying, we've been extremely unlucky so far.

Football analyst discusses how Brentford's £172k weekly wave bill competes with Aston Villa's £950k

Are they honestly paying out over 50 million a year on wages! If there ever was a big fat slimey bubble waiting to burst it's happening in the championship now...
 

hanworthbee

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Are they honestly paying out over 50 million a year on wages! If there ever was a big fat slimey bubble waiting to burst it's happening in the championship now...

Villa are getting £90m in parachute payments though....£40m last season, £33m this year and the rest next if they don't go up.....so they can easily afford the current wage bill atm
 

RT

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Interesting that Phil just rubbished the guy at the forum. Never heard of him I think were his words
 

Banana

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Interesting that Phil just rubbished the guy at the forum. Never heard of him I think were his words

Yes quite amusing that he said he'd never heard of him.

From his podcast with Beesotted this morning he was one of those guys MB pays £20 a match to watch and collect data.

One thing you can be absolutely sure of that if MotD are showing xG then MB moved on from that a while back #truefact
 

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Conspiracy alert that SmartOdds seek to discredit the author and also I beleive SmartOdds lawyers had been right through the book which is why its taken so long to come out
 
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Conspiracy alert that SmartOdds seek to discredit the author and also I beleive SmartOdds lawyers had been right through the book which is why its taken so long to come out

As mentioned in the original post...

I don't get your conspiracy comment :confused:
 

jbee

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When he was on the Beesotted podcast and said he was in the 'data collection' department I thought hmmmm. That sounds very low level to me. Subsequently he struggled to decently explain expected goals and offered no real statistical insight. Doesn't really surprise me that Giles has no idea who he is. Is he even a statistician of any kind or just a young kid who was paid to watch games and write down when a shot happened?
 

IDontBeeLieveIt

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Sounds like a load of dung to me.

The Football Code truly will change the way you watch football. Any fan who doesn't read it will be left behind.
I doubt it. I'd heard of expected goals before him and it didn't change the way I viewed football.
A stat is a stat. It might be slightly better than looking at possession stats or suchlike but then who judges games based on that anyway (bar a plonker).

it would help any fan of football better understand the beautiful game. By revealing what actually makes some teams better than others
Really? I'll wager it will not do that and that what it will do is simply mention a few stats/metrics which are better judging a teams play than standard ones which are relatively useless/misleading.

Obviously, being able to accurately assess which teams and players are the best opens many doorways. Fantasy football managers will be able to win more points. Football pundits will be able to provide better commentary. Even those who play video games such as Fifa and Football Manager will be able to use The Football Code's system to assess their own ability.

The Football Code's system.......or someone else's system you've got a cursory knowledge of from a year's work?

If I was going to read a book on this subject I'd read it from an expert not the cheap labour hired to do the monkey-work!
 

Leonardo

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To be honest you probably learn more from Ted Knutsons website and pod casts.
 

wanderer paul

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Basically a load of old bull and has latched on to the new way football clubs operate re signings etc. It's not for me. As he's also been rubbished - by not knowing him or recognising he worked for Smartodds - by Phil Giles, backs it all up.
 

jlove

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Let's wait for Phil Giles' book: My Life in Numbers: Recruiting for The Championship, Premier League Ambitions and Birmingham City...
 
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