The Football Pool (also known as ‘the pools’) is a form of betting on the results of weekend football results.  The classic game is based on the old Treble Chance rules which awards 3 points for a score draw, 2 points for a no-score draw and one point for a win (whether home or away) – although the last time I played it there was a difference between home wins (1 point) and away wins (1½ points).  You then take your 8 best scoring lines to give you a total out of 24.

The prize fund is split up into (at a maximum) six dividends but obviously the highest scoring line is declared the top dividend with a larger proportion of the prize fund awarded to players with that score.  Therefore, one hopes that there are only 8 score draws (obviously the more score draws there are the more chance there is of getting 24 points and therefore the greater number of winners sharing the prize fund) and that you are the only person in the country to have them, therefore guaranteeing the jackpot.

In the case of a match being allocated a pools number and that game not taking part for any reason the outcome of the that game (for the purposes of ‘the pools’) would be adjudicated by the ‘pools panel’ based on current form and history between the teams.

On page 72 of my copy of the 2012 edition of Old Moore’s Almanack there is a list of four teams for each of the football dates throughout the year.  Their forecast is based upon a combination of planetary indications (whatever that means) and team colours (I suppose they mean their home colours and not the fact that they could be playing away from home in different strips). They claim that their predications are good for up to two days either side of the date given and so I will take them upon that criteria.

In fairness to Old Moore’s Almanack I will not publish their predictions until after the weekend that they occur (if you want to see the predications you can buy your own copy) but I will try to fill in a little more information regarding the results, including the colour of strip they were wearing that day.

The first date is the 7th January (FA Cup weekend), we wait with bated breath.