Saturday, May 24, 2008

One of these will win Eurovision 2008

As this may be my last post before the event, here are the latest odds and some one-liners for all the countries that survived through to the final. A previous post gave what the betting fraternity regard as the seven contenders. Below, the bold entries are what I think could win this year.

4.2 Russia
Professionally written, stage-managed. Reasonable number with excellent pedegree and Russia are desperate to win but I still don't see it. The performance at the semis wasn't that great either.
4.6 Ukraine
Great performance and she'll appeal to the boys and men but this Shady Lady's in the shadow of the 2004 winner. She'll get lots and lots of friends' votes so will be near the top but, again, I don't see it winning, despite the fast-dropping odds of late.
11.5 Greece
Much depends on how nice Greece has been to its neighbours of late, and they haven't got Cyprus to give them 12pts this time. Poppy tune, American pretty girl but she'll probably try too hard, scoring reasonably but not enough
12.5 Serbia
The first of my tips to win if voters are in anthemic, well-sung ballad mood and don't mind returning to Beograd next year
15 Sweden
Experienced blonde performs with confidence but that make-up puts me off. It'll do well but not as well as people think
16 Finland
Remarkable shortening of the odds for this competent but pretty un-Eurovision band of bare-chested rockers. I don't think it stands a chance but there you go.
18.5 Armenia
I have been tipping this but a disappointing performance in the semis seems to responsible for the drop from once challenging Russia for favourite. She looks better and the song's better than her Ukraine, Greek and Swedish rivals in this niche and she'll get plenty of friends and neighbours' votes. If she performs on the night then you'll be glad you got these odds!
32 Bosnia and Herzegovina
People don't seem to be able to make up their mind on this one. I'm going to make it one of my tips to win. It's a bit mad but (a) it is well-performed and (b) there are plenty of friends and neighbours so it has to do well anyway.
38 Turkey
Another rock group, this one's less hairy than Finland and not at all bad. But is a Turkish fairly serious rock group going to get that many votes? No, I don't think so.
46 Spain
I can't remember why I didn't like this and haven't heard it since. Probably best that way.
60 Portugal
Hmm. Don't know what this more serious stuff is doing to have the odds shorten so much this week. Competent and solid but instantly forgettable so unless they're on last or there are oldies in the juries, no chance.
65 France
Forgettable and average.
65 Georgia
Songs about peace and heroes do well and so will this. But not a winner as there are better ones for the money.
70 Norway
This is my fourth tip. The best of the Skandinavian entries and so may benefit from their generous friends and neighbours. Good song, simple but excellent presentation, good-looking girls. Great shade of blue at the semis. These odds are great.
85 Denmark
I get this one confused with Greece. One's chiki chiki and the other is a combination lock. Greece do it better so that's that really.
90 Azerbaijan
More peace and heroes, I think. Not a lot else.
100 Latvia
Why is this out at 100-1 still? This pirates rubbish is possibly the most instantly catchy and memorable of all the entries. With a hi, hi, hi . . . See, you're doing it now! (No, not the Pearl & Teddy Car entry). I mean, I'd never buy this and would try extremely hard not to let anyone catch me singing along but it could be the surprise of the night. But it is in Serbia and they are very serious so maybe it won't be. Chance of turning a tenner into a grand, though.
150 Iceland
Big production. Lots of good work went into this and, if excuted really well on the night this one will appeal to a good number. Just not quite enough douze points, though, for the top spot.
160 Israel
Now here's a potential winner. Genuinely good song, well-produced and well-performed too. I just don't know how many friends Israel has these days. I'll tip it anyway.
180 Romania
This was much more strongly favoured before but has almost sunk without trace. Must have been a poor semis performance. I'd say we can forget it now.
190 Poland
This was my very first tip but, whilst the Celine Dionnesque performance, which has quality, and the gorgeous aquamarine dress are strong points and the song strong itself, Ukraine or Spain'll get the diva points, and Serbia, Georgia or Albania the ballad points.
190 Croatia
Oh dear, some old guy and some more strange people singing at odd times + a woman doddering about in a less than attractive way doesn't do it for me. It may actually be well sung but not really sure what it is.
220 UK
Well, we're not bottom of the betting list, at any rate. 220's an improvement on 300, too. The guy is just not going to win, though, so it doesn't make much difference.
280 Albania
I like this one. Not sure why it's such high odds - maybe Albania's not that popular amongst the main blocs. The girl's just 16 but performs well and it's a gentle but effective tune. There is just that slim chance that, if she does it well on the night and others are a bit average and if the sort of simplicity and peace and all that jazz appeal to the old juries, then this would be a contender.
290 Germany
Er, no idea about this one. Must have forgotten it as soon as he or she stopped.
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