Betting is in most cases a fast procedure. Even if you chase early odds and place your bets as soon as bookies start to offer their lines, it will only take a few days before you can know whether you have won or lost your bet. But what happens in long-term betting? What if you were to place a bet in September and get paid in the coming May?
Although it might not sound as fast paced, as for example live betting, “ante post”, or long-term betting as often described, can become really exciting and profitable, even before an event closes. There is no need to risk your entire bankroll and spend hours upon hours analyzing and wagering. A thorough knowledge, inspiring instinct and a little bit of luck are all that are needed to earn a profit.
Ante post betting: A confusing origin
Where does the name “ante post” derive from? There’s a hint of controversy surrounding its origin. The term was firstly used in horse racing betting, which created a common misunderstanding about the meaning of the second word (“post”). Given that the words describe every bet placed before the start of the race, many thought that the term applies for wagers placed “before the horse gets in the post”, i.e. right before the horse starts the race.
The truth is that both words come from Latin and are actually quite simple. “Ante” means “before” and “Post” means “after”. We actually use these words without realizing it when someone asks what time it is (a.m. means “ante meridium”, before noon, and p.m. means “post meridium”, “after noon”).
Of course, these words technically apply for every bet, as even in short-term betting, you place your stakes before an event has actually ended. The specific "ante post" term only describes betting on tournaments and league or cup competitions, overall winners, group winners, leading scorers and so on.
Betting on everything
Like we mentioned before, ante post betting was at first used in horse racing and greyhounds, especially concerning bets that were placed a day before the Grand National races. Soon enough, however, they covered every sporting event and are now mainly used in football betting. You can place ante post bets on a huge variety of sports. Online bookmakers offer ante post odds on nearly every major football league, along with many other specials.
For example, in the Premier League you can find odds on the next manager to be sacked! You can also place bets on a team to finish in the top three, teams to be relegated or even on the leading scorer of a league. Ante post betting is available on other sports as well, especially in basketball and some American sports. You can bet on NFL and MLB winners, teams to make the Superbowl final, or even the NBA regular season and playoff MVP.
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Even on politics!
Ante post betting is thoroughly enjoyed on some non-sporting events, like the Eurovision song contest, beauty pageants, all kinds of politics bets (next president, next prime minister, election winners and losers), even popular TV reality shows. Paddy Power has actually gone to the extent of offering various Donald Trump bets. However, ante post betting gets really serious when summer football tournaments are about to start.
Competitions that last less than a month, such as the FIFA World Cup, European Championships and Copa America rake in billions of wagers from punters located in every corner of the world. This is an express ante post bet, as the duration of the tournament and the many special bets offered (for example, betting on group winners) allow you to place an ante post bet and see what will happen in just two weeks.
Ante post in the middle
In case you find valuable odds, that meet your betting criteria, you can place an ante post bet at any time of the season. Some times you can even find some nice odds right before the end of the season. Keep in mind however that it’s usually better to risk a little more at the start of the season, to get far higher prices. Before the start of a league, bookmakers offer league winner odds on every team. As the league draws closer to its end, more and more contestants are ruled out and the odds of the remaining teams drop significantly.
Cashing out an ante post bet
The cash out service is a powerful weapon in your betting arsenal when it comes to ante post betting. Not only because you can shorten the duration of an event by “closing” it earlier than its actual end, but also because you can finish your bet at the most valuable time for your bankroll.
For example, if you have an inspiring choice of an absolute outsider winning a league, similar to Leicester City in 2016, you don’t have to anxiously wait until the end. You can earn a hefty profit even if your favorite team is leading after ten matchdays. The cash out offer by the bookie can be very tempting.
Pros and cons of ante post betting
Better odds: Traditionally you can get far better odds if you bet on a favorite to win the league compared to a single match. Even absolute favorites in top leagues are offered on competitive lines. If you have an extensive knowledge of the league and think an outsider might have a good chance of winning, then ante post betting is for you.
Starting out: It’s one of those rare moments in betting, where you start from the same line as the bookmaker. You make a prediction about what’s going to happen in the coming months, the same way the bookie does. He has no numbers, no software, no compilers to help him when he publishes his first odds. It’s him against you, and he has to make the first move; offer the lines.
Precious time: During an ante post betting you don’t have any kind of time pressure. You can better think your next move, whether to cash out or let the bet run for an extra week. You can double-check data, odds and possibilities.
Lower vig: When you bet all the time, a precious part of your money goes straight to the bookmaker’s account due to vig (commission). When you place an ante post bet you have your money nibbled at, just the one time.
Unpredictability: Excluding the unlikely event of you being a fortune teller, you never know exactly what’s going to happen in a few weeks, let alone across a whole football season. Ante post betting on a league winner means that you have to bet on an outcome that has to be confirmed after eight or nine months, where a lot of matches, injuries, suspensions, manager changes and refereeing decisions can have an impact. It’s really hard to make an accurate prediction, as you don't simply have to be inspired but also quite lucky as well.
Better in the bank: When you place an ante post bet, you basically invest your stake once, with the promise of winning at the end of the season. Your money is “locked” and cannot be used on other bets. If this amount is big and the expected earnings low, you should perhaps consider putting your money in a bank account instead.
A difficult up-side-down: If things don’t favor your prediction from the very beginning, it becomes increasingly difficult to save your amount by cashing out in competitive odds. Some ante post bets are completely forgotten during the season, as they had been placed at the start of the league, while on a loose mood.
The ante post key: Patience!
In any case, you have to be patient. That’s the best advice anyone could can give you. Calculated thoughts always beat impulsive ones when it comes to bets being settled in months. Ante post bets give you plenty of time to analyze, meaning that there is no reason to make a reckless decision.
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