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Match Rigging and the Favorite Long-Shot Bias in the Italian Football Betting Market


  • Marco Rossi

    () (University La Sapienza, Rome)


In this empirical study, I compared the results of matches played in the Italian football league Serie A with the odds offered by bookmakers. I found that the market odds were good predictors of the actual game results, but I also found that the distribution of returns for odds’ subgroups displayed the so-called favorite long shot (F/L) bias. Given the evidence of match-rigging in Italian football, I investigated if this bias was caused by a strategic behavior of bookmakers who were expecting to deal with insiders. My results support that match-rigging was associated with a larger F/L bias.

Suggested Citation

  • Marco Rossi, 2011. "Match Rigging and the Favorite Long-Shot Bias in the Italian Football Betting Market," International Journal of Sport Finance, Fitness Information Technology, vol. 6(4), pages 317-334, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:jsf:intjsf:v:6:y:2011:i:4:p:317-334

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    Cited by:

    1. García, Jaume & Pérez, Levi & Rodríguez, Plácido, 2016. "Forecasting football match results: Are the many smarter than the few?," MPRA Paper 69687, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item


    football wagering; match rigging; favorite long shot bias;

    JEL classification:

    • L83 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Sports; Gambling; Restaurants; Recreation; Tourism


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