It’s nearly that time of year again! Put on your dancing shoes, grab the microphone and your bet slip - because Eurovision 2018 is about to take the world by storm. This year the song contest is being held in Lisbon, Portugal following Salvador Sobral’s win with a slow but powerful jazz walt ‘Amar pelos dois’ in Kiev last year.
As always there’s going to be heaps of excellent talent on display and, in true Eurovision fashion, some strangeness to match. Betting on the Eurovision is tantamount to placing money on any sport and it is frequently one of the most bet upon specials each year.
Eurovision bettors mean serious business, and this year will be no different as thousands of viewing parties are held across the world for the much-loved glitzy competition. The contest has been taking place since 1956 and viewers have seen every type of performer take to the stage since then.
Eurovision betting odds for 2018 have been available for a while, but the race has really only begun to heat up for this year’s Lisbon edition. Now that we are approaching the semifinals there are two markets for Eurovision punters to consider - the overall winner of the competition and placing in the top 5.
We’ve compiled the ultimate list of Eurovision betting tips for you to consider when parting with your money for this year’s flashy affair:
The folks Down Under are the most recent to have made their debut entry in the Eurovision (Vienna, 2015) but are yet to come in the top 6 of the competition. Jessica Mauboy will be representing the country in this year’s competition with a pop number ‘We Got Love’. She’s 12/1 at top online bookmakers to take it home for the first time, however she’s 5/4 to come between 1st and 5th place at Unibet.
The UK and Ireland last won the Eurovision 21 and 22 years ago respectively. Ryan O'Shaughnessy will be crooning over a soft acoustic piece for the Emerald Isle with his track ‘Together’ and is currently at 200/1 to win the competition with 888sport, while SuRie is 150/1 with her effort ‘Storm’ for the UK.
There’s really no value to be found here but we’ll entertain a look at the 1st-5th place market. The UK are 20/1 here while Ireland are 25/1 - but this is an absolute stretch to go for considering both countries poor performances in recent years. In fact, you’d probably have better luck with Ladbrokes’ ‘UK to finish last’ special at 3/1.
Sweden have won the Eurovision 6 times, which is the second most in history (ironically after Ireland’s 7). They’ve gone for a funky tune by Benjamin Ingrosso called ‘Dance You Off’ for the 2018 edition of the contest. Ladbrokes have the Scandinavians at 20/1 to win this year which are decent odds for a country that has come in the top 5 since 2014 - certainly a bet worth thinking about.
Portugal, currently 80/1 with Paddy Power, have entered a song which represents a significant departure from last year’s winning number. ‘O Jardim’, sang by Claudia Pascoal and Isaura may not cut it this year. Despite their win last year, Portugal have either failed to qualify or come between 10th and 25th in each contest they participated in since 1999.
The Czech’s, who have been competing since 2007, are amongst the favourites for this year’s competition so they’re definitely worth considering. The country has only ever had one entrant reach the final, Gabriela Guncikova in 2016, and will be very hopeful for 2018. If you want to hedge your bets on a 1st to 3rd place try Mikolas Josef and his very strange song ‘Lie to Me’ at 6/1 each-way with Ladbrokes.
Bulgaria have submitted a strong entry and represent an excellent value Eurovision bet for this year’s contest. ‘Bones’ by Equinox is sure to be a hit after the competition, regardless of placement. While Israel continue to lead the favourites, their song ‘Toy’ by Netta has received mixed reactions. This makes Bulgaria an excellent shout at 7/1 with Black Type to win the competition.