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Eurovision Song Contest: Stephen Cass's guide to the 26 Grand Final contenders

Form and verdict on all of Saturday's songs

1 of 1

TV: BBC1 & RTE One, 8pm Saturday

1 Malta

Michela, 'Chameleon' 80-1
Form (most recent on right) 8-23-X-12-X-X
The sacrificial lamb opens the show. The up-tempo number was performed moderately in the semi-final and their goose must be cooked from the worst possible draw.

2 Albania

Jonida Maliqi, 'Ktheju Tokes' 300-1
Form X-X-17-X-X-11
This Balkan ballad is a paint-by-numbers effort but there’s something endearing about the singer and her dazzling pearly veneers.

3 Czech Republic

Lake Malawi, 'Friend of a Friend' 200-1
Form X-X-X-25-X-6
Creepy lyrics and a creepy singer. The outfits are terrible yet they might outperform their odds.

4 Germany

S!sters, 'Sister' 500-1
Form 21-18-27-26-25-4
A duet called S!sters, singing a song titled Sister, shouting at each other about being sisters. And yet they are not sisters.

It deserves last place for that alone.

5 Russia

Sergey Lazarev, 'Scream' 20-1
Form 5-7-2-3-X-X
No amount of money can help if your song is a shouty, chorus-free bore-fest.

They came third in 2016 but are surely scuppered now by the early draw. They try hard but they need to try harder than this.

6 Denmark

Leonora, 'Love Is Forever' 150-1
Form 1-9-X-X-20-9
Sickly sweet happy-clappy nonsense. Take some anti-nausea tablets before watching this one.

7 San Marino

Serhat, 'Say Na Na Na' 300-1
Form X-24-X-X-X-X
An abomination of a performance which screams mid-life crisis.

8 North Macedonia

Tamara Todevska, 'Proud' 150-1`
Form X-X-X-X-X-X
A smoky Bond-style ballad with smashing vocals.

This very likeable performance should contend to make the left-hand side of the scoreboard. The low draw is a negative, though.

9 Sweden

John Lundvik, 'Too Late for Love' 12-1
Form 14-3-1-5-5-7
This is competent gospel pop with shades of Janet Jackson.

The singer lived in London until the age of six and has a great smile. It looks certain to contend for the top five and if better quality songs underperform it might surprise.

10 Slovenia

Zala Kralj & Gasper Santl, 'Sebi' 250-1
Form X-25-14-X-X-22
This gorgeous slow-moving electro-pop song had potential, but is too wooden to strike a chord with televoters. It had some sketchy moments in the semi-final.

11 Cyprus

Tamta, 'Replay' 150-1
Form X-X-22-21-21-2
They were second last year but the follow-up has made the classic copycat error. Hit a few bum notes in semi-final too.

Drink when you see the costume change and pyro curtain.

12 Netherlands

Duncan Laurence, 'Arcade' 5-7
Form 9-2-X-11-11-18
A spine-tingling ballad with shades of Chris Martin. Flawless vocals and simple, effective staging.

This is the highest quality entry by a country mile and should win if engaging with audiences at home.

13 Greece

Katerine Duska, 'Better Love' 150-1
Form 6-20-19-X-19-X
One of the few lead female vocals in the contest belting out a 90s style power ballad.

The vocals were nasal in semi-final and the staging was messy. No chance.

14 Israel

Kobi Marimi, 'Home' 300-1
Form X-X-9-14-23-1
Rocking the classic tuxedo and dog chain combo, it’s an amateur dramatics song with an over-the-top personal positivity message.
It might finish last.

15 Norway

KEiiNO, 'Spirit in the Sky' 40-1
Form 4-8-8-X-10-15
A mish-mash of three different performers who make an admirable attempt to sing three different songs in three minutes.

They nailed the semi-final performance but it’s too gimmicky.

16 United Kingdom

Michael Rice, 'Bigger Than Us' 200-1
Form 19-17-24-24-15-24
A bland song is somewhat uplifted by Rice’s strong vocals. However the act lacks pizzazz and will do well to break into the top 20.

17 Iceland

Hatari, 'Hatrid Mun Sigra' 25-1
Form 17-15-X-X-X-X
Techno and electro-pop with a hint of heavy metal, performed in BDSM leather. In other words, classic Eurovision.

The chorus is melodic and somewhat wonderful. It could finish first or 21st.

18 Estonia

Victor Crone, 'Storm' 300-1
Form 20-X-7-X-X-8
An extremely dull and dated dance track which may contend for last place.

19 Belarus

Zena, 'Like It' 250-1
Form 16-16-X-X-17-X
A high energy up-tempo shrieking teenager giving it her all. It provides something different but is vastly outclassed.

20 Azerbaijan

Chingiz, 'Truth' 20-1
Form 2-22-12-17-14-X
A masterclass in a modern pop floor-filler.

The slow build-up and beat marries perfectly with a banging chorus but the staging is a little dark. A top-five contender.

21 France

Bilal Hassani, 'Roi' 33-1
Form 23-26-25-6-12-13
Delicate, uplifting up-tempo pop. Hammering home an empowerment message makes the package sickly sweet and the singer is weak vocally.

It’s nice but not good enough.

22 Italy

Mahmood, 'Soldi' 20-1
Form 7-21-3-16-6-5
This has a genuinely new sound and a very likeable singer.

It’s monotone in parts and the dancers detract from the package but the sound is uber-hip so it should go well.

23 Serbia

Nevena Bozovic, 'Kruna' 200-1
Form X-X-10-18-X-19
Perfect vocals and a likeable female lead for this typical Balkan ballad.

Could do well with the juries but it’s a little dull to get in the mix for top honours.

24 Switzerland

Luca Hanni, 'She Got Me' 14-1
Form X-13-X-X-X-X
One of the early favourites, it has slipped down the pecking order due to weak vocals and a poor semi-final effort.

The cheesy stage show and creepy lyrics make it hard to see a top-five finish.

25 Australia

Kate Miller-Heidke, 'Zero Gravity' 6-1
Form X-X-5-2-9-20
Pop-opera with incredible vocals and by far and away the best stage performance in the contest – it builds to anthemic climax.

Can go well with both juries and televoters.

26 Spain

Miki, 'La Venda' 100-1
Form 25-10-21-22-26-23
A classic show closer – up-tempo flamenco pop. Forgettable but might do okay as it’s the last song voters will hear before picking up their phones.


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Sickly sweet happy-clappy nonsense. Take some anti-nausea tablets before watching this one
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