A major plunge on the Netherlands took place following the Eurovision 2019 second semi-final on Thursday night. Duncan Laurence gave a capable, if not mind-blowing performance, and he is now an unbackable proposition at 4/6 with the best betting sites. Arcade is without doubt the correct favourite as it is jury friendly, spine-tinglingly good, and it is boosted by Laurence’s phenomenal vocal range. It looks the most likely winner but it is not beyond the bounds of possibility a shock could ensue.
Followers of this column are in a nice position if they availed of the advised prices on Netherlands and Australia in earlier columns, but there are still angles into all these acts if you so wish. Australia are the big danger after stealing the show with the best stage show ever seen in Eurovision, in semi-final one. If you want to get Australia on side at this stage I would suggest backing the 12/1 with Bet365 to win the televote, as they are very well placed in position 25 of 26 on the night.
In terms of this column we have enough skin in the game on Australia already so I won’t recommend a bet, however one country I would certainly be happy to add to into the mix is Italy. Mahmood’s Soldi is an urban hip-hop track with a terrific slow dance beat. Having won Italy’s competitive Sanremo contest Mahmood has valuable big night experience. The fact the song is in both Arabic and Italian will broaden its appeal. Given it’s the unknown quantity of the night it makes sense to have it onside at 18/1 with SportNation with a very generous five places.
A popular betting market is the big 5 (Italy, France, Germany, UK and Spain). This is effectively a match between France and Italy. The French were backed into second favourites early in the week but the flaws in Bilal’s vocals were highlighted during dress rehearsals and I cannot see them achieving a strong jury score. Therefore the Italians are value at 4/6 with Paddy Power to take the big 5 honours.
There is still a very attractive route available into the Netherlands as a betting proposition. Given the betting momentum they are looking like a runaway winner of the contest. The last runaway winner was Portugal in 2017 and they amassed 758 points on the night. The other two winners under the new scoring system in operation the last three years achieved 529 and 534 points respectively. I would set the bar for Netherlands points somewhere around 600 so 5/2 with Bet365 about 600 points or more being the winning score is a very appealing proposition.
The last place market is always an interesting one. Germany’s awful effort is the correct favourite but in four of the last ten years qualifiers from the semi-finals have managed to finish last outright. San Marino and Estonia are arguably the worst of the semi-final entrants to have made it through so quotes of 40/1 with Bet365 about Estonia finishing bottom are generous. I suspect the fact they are drawn in stall 18 is giving hope to layers, but nine of the last ten wooden spoon victors have surprisingly had a double-digit draw.
Finally, North Macedonia gave a wonderful vocal performance in their semi-final. Their act is extremely jury friendly and they could contend for a top 10 finish if voters engage with them. Just a small bet is advised at 10/3 with Ladbrokes as these markets tend to be a minefield.
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