Sports Betting Guide

The principles of successful penalty card betting

Warning cards betting can be very profitable. However, just like any other type of betting, it requires some knowledge and experience. We would like to share with you some useful tips that will help you place a winning bet.

The principles of successful penalty card betting

What to consider when betting on penalty cards?



Teams - some matches are really similar - you can see the tension on the field from the very first minute. Sometimes, all you need is one team to commit a brutal foul at the beginning of the match, for another one to react and instantly adjust (often despite not having an aggressive style of play). However, it is worth to be cautious as bookmakers like offering a ridiculously high penalty cards line for matches in which teams with a rough style of playing take part.

We have also noticed another tendency. Referees are getting used to the more aggressive style of playing of a particular team and stop showing them penalty cards that often. The best example is Atletico Madrid team which, since the arrival of Diego Simeone, plays aggressively, constantly putting pressure on the opponent. Back then, referees were booking players for every rough tackle, but nowadays they got used to their style, and they show them fewer penalty cards.

The strategy of both teams is also very important. If team A often attacks through the sides using fast and skilful wingers, there is a good chance that defenders will have a hard time stopping them and after a couple of fouls will get booked. One the other hand, if team B is very offensive, its full-backs are left one-on-one against quick forwards of the opposing team in case of the counter-attack and end up committing lots of fouls.

Generally, defenders are more prone to be given the penalty card than offensive players. It looks logical, but it is more complex than it seems. The analysis of the statistics showed that a defender is more likely to receive a card than forward for the same amount of fouls (60% of defenders committing 4 fouls finish the match with at least one yellow card compared to 30% in the case of forwards). The reason behind this is the importance of the place where the foul was committed. Defenders commonly commit a foul close to their penalty area, protecting the team from conceding a goal. Forwards commit fouls mostly away from their own penalty box, and in most cases, commit one while fighting for a better position.

Statistics show that more cards are shown to teams which are considered underdogs. They are usually pushed back deep and tend to foul when fighting for the ball. The only exception is games where favourites struggle.

Place of the match - a study shows that away team players are more likely to be disciplined with a penalty card (in the analysed Champions League season the data showed 25% of discipline cases for the home team and 75% for the away). Of course, it does not mean that the away team will commit more fouls but rather something to keep an eye out for. Home field advantage, along with all its aspects contributes to the fact that both the away team and the referee feel too much pressure, which converts into more warning cards being shown. 

Phase of the season - as it was found, more cards are shown during the first few games of the campaign. It is like that due to the freshness of the players who are energetic and eager to play. What is more, in the opening part of the season, the players do not think about the consequences and potential exclusions from next fixtures in case of a larger number of received penalty cards. Furthermore, everyone is playing to their fullest, trying to get off to a good start at the beginning of the season. While the end part of it only sees a couple of cup contenders and those who are trying to escape relegation.

Country and league - there are nations (for example, Balkan countries) and stadiums, on which the atmosphere is exceptionally hot, and the pressure from the fans put on both the opposition and the referee is higher than anywhere else. Such games often seem to have very little in common with football, looking more like a brawl.

Number of penalty cards in top European leagues. As it turns out the highest average number of shown cards per game (5.50) is observed in Spanish La Liga, one of the most competitive leagues in the whole world. The second place is taken by the Italian Serie A (5.00). Surprisingly, but the least “booked” leagues are German Bundesliga (3.50) and English Premier League (3.50), which are famous for their intensity.

Importance of the match - it is obvious that the more important the match is, the tougher the competition will be. The significance of the match puts extreme pressure on players not to concede a goal. This results in a higher number of fouls and thus, penalty cards. A very anticipated match also means stadium packed with passionate and loud fans that often have a great influence on the referee’s decision.

There are, of course, exceptions. It is hard to imagine games more important than the World Cup or Champions League. Still, statistically, referees show fewer warning cards in those competitions. Why is it like that? Are the teams not willing to win? Do they play sloppy defence? The answer to these questions is no. Players who get a second yellow/red card during such major tournaments will miss the following match putting their team in a disadvantage, which is the main reason for such phenomena.

League competitions usually have lots of fixtures and the absence of even a key player for one or two games will not affect the whole campaign that much. Tournaments typically do not last long, which makes all of the matches quite important. For example, losing two starting centre backs before a quarter-final match can substantially affect the team’s chances. However, it is sometimes in player’s interest to be shown a penalty card and miss the following match (for example, before the last group stage game during the World Cup) in order to reset his yellow cards count before the next phase of the tournament. Obviously, we do not approve such actions, but if they can help us place a winning bet, then why not?

Referee - the last but not least is the man in black. Even if all the other conditions are in our favour, the bet could still lose if the referee will not do his job. It is him who decides whether or not your wager wins. Thus, it is also important to have some information about the ref and his/her style, especially when it comes to penalty cards.

Some referees are more strict and do not tolerate any conflicts between the players from the first minutes of the match. On the other hand, there are those who always try to talk to players instead of reaching for a penalty card. You can easily find all the necessary information about the referee, like the average number of penalty cards he/she shows per match, his/her previous games, etc. on the internet. 

Just remember, a proper analysis is the key to successful betting.

The influence of the penalty cards on the result of the match



Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.

Restricted HTML

  • Allowed HTML tags: <a href hreflang> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote cite> <code> <ul type> <ol start type> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <h2 id> <h3 id> <h4 id> <h5 id> <h6 id>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.
Bonuses and Promotions

Free Bets and Bonuses

Get some great betting offers and bookmaker bonuses like free bets and more.

Online Bookmakers

Online Bookmakers

Check out some comprehensive reviews of some selected online bookmakers. 

Free Betting Tips

Free Betting Tips

Take a look at free betting predictions from our expert tipsters.