Eurovision 2021 is now only six months away. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Eurovision fans have had to wait longer than usual between contests. However, with Eurovision season almost upon us, Eurovision.tv have revealed major news regarding the semi-final draw for the upcoming contest.

Eurovision 2021: Semi-final allocations

We now know which semi-final each country will be performing in. The allocation draw for Eurovision 2020, which took place on January 28, will be maintained and utilised for Eurovision 2021. This means that the countries competing in each semi-final have not changed.

Countries which were drawn to perform in the first half of their respective semi-finals in 2020 will retain those spots for 2021. The same also holds true for countries which were drawn to perform in the second half of each semi-final. Furthermore, The Netherlands and the Big Five will also retain their draws when it comes to which semi-final they will vote in.

Back in October, the EBU revealed the list of participating countries, confirming the same 41 countries which would’ve participated in Eurovision 2020.

Executive Supervisor Martin Österdahl explained the reasoning behind this decision. “With the same participating countries as last year, the Reference Group decided that it made sense for both ticket holders and for participating broadcasters to keep the same semi-final draws as 2020.”

Eurovision 2021: Semi-final 1 (18 May 2021)

First half

  • Australia
  • Belarus
  • Ireland
  • Lithuania
  • North Macedonia
  • Russia
  • Slovenia
  • Sweden

Second half

  • Azerbaijan
  • Belgium
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Israel
  • Malta
  • Norway
  • Romania
  • Ukraine

Germany, Italy and The Netherlands will also vote in semi-final 1.

Eurovision 2021: Semi-final 2 (20 May 2021)

First half

  • Austria
  • Czech Republic
  • Estonia
  • Greece
  • Iceland
  • Moldova
  • Poland
  • San Marino
  • Serbia

Second half

  • Albania
  • Armenia
  • Bulgaria
  • Denmark
  • Finland
  • Georgia
  • Latvia
  • Portugal
  • Switzerland

France, Spain and the United Kingdom will also vote in semi-final 2.

 

Eurovision 2021: Running order

Back in May, we were given a look at how the running order would’ve shaped up if Eurovision 2020 had gone ahead. Sweden would’ve opened the first semi-final, while Greece would’ve opened the second.

While the allocation draw used for Eurovision 2020 will be retained, a new running order will be determined once all songs are revealed, as is traditionally the case every year.

In lieu of the traditional ceremony involving the allocation draw and host insignia exchange, Martin Österdahl also confirmed that they have “plenty more planned to build excitement ahead of the return of the Eurovision Song Contest next year”.

What do you think about the decision to retain the same semi-final allocation draw? Do you think a new draw should’ve been conducted? Let us know in the comments below.

Read more Eurovision 2021 news here

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Rob
Rob
7 days ago

Anyone know the decision on The Netherlands Jeangu Macrooy? Will he still be drawn 23 in the grand final.

Jimmy Smit
Jimmy Smit
7 days ago
Reply to  Rob

It’s a decent spot, I’d want to hold onto it if I were him!

Denis
Denis
8 days ago

Because it’s suppsoed to be fresh and exciting? How exciting would it be to watch a contest where all of the songs would be over a year old? Where is the freshness? Besides that there are other issues. What if the broadcaster has an annual selection show, should that be cancelled? Then what should replace it? And then there is the issue of the artists themselves. Not all of them wants to take part in ESC 2021. Not everything evolves around ESC, they have other plans and have already moved on, Should broadcasters force them to cancel everything so that… Read more »

RavensHeart
RavensHeart
8 days ago

So remember when we couldn’t have the same songs because “THE RULES”

Well what about the rule requiring them to do a proper allocation. Literally every part of 2020 being copy and pasted over to 2021 except for the songs, all so the EBU can make some cash selling the CD

Ana
Ana
7 days ago
Reply to  RavensHeart

Get over it already, it’s also not the same thing. Allocation draw doesn’t get old, ESC songs do, and some of them would be unlistenable by the 2020 contest.

Jofty
Jofty
7 days ago
Reply to  Ana

For example Think About Things!

Frisian esc
Frisian esc
7 days ago
Reply to  RavensHeart

I think the EBU argument for ticket holders is kinda logical

Diabolo
Diabolo
8 days ago

As I’ve mentioned in a previous article, this was the best decision they could have made regarding the Semi-Final allocation. The 41 participating countries are the same, so why not keep the same allocation. In addition this Semi-Final split has many positive sides: Armenia and Azerbaijan in different semis (Concerning the situation with the two countries right now, it’s best that they both are in different semis. That way they can’t reduce each other’s chances to qualify for the final. Also we won’t get those awkward interviews after the 10 qualifiers have a press conference) Greece and Cyprus are in… Read more »

Last edited 8 days ago by Diabolo
Una
Una
7 days ago
Reply to  Diabolo

You may be those of opinion that “Norway and Sweden” giving each other high points in the same semi final is good taste. Take another look at this draw.
Can you please stop trashing Eastern countries like Moldova and Romania. You don’t seem to mind the Baltic bloc or the ex-Soviet block or the Scandinavian one.

Diabolo
Diabolo
7 days ago
Reply to  Una

Of course there is the topic of Nordic countries bloc and Baltic bloc. It wasn’t my intention at all to “trash” the Eastern countries. I just admitted the fact that the countries I mentioned earlier tend to vote for each other the most. I know that that Nordic bloc also like to vote for each other, especially if they have strong songs. For example, last year the Nordic bloc was pretty apparent with many of the Nordic countries’ televoters giving 12 points to Norway, Sweden and Iceland (and Danish, Finnish and Icelandic juries giving 12 points to Sweden). In this… Read more »

Last edited 7 days ago by Diabolo
GuyGuy
GuyGuy
8 days ago

That’s a shame..IMO this was a great opportunity to have a new allocation draw. Now we are “stuck” with this unbalanced 2 semis, meaning that probably several great entries from the stronger semi 1 won’t reach the final, resulting in an overall weaker final…But I do hope I’m wrong

Linus
Linus
6 days ago
Reply to  GuyGuy

haha songs have NOT been chosen yet

Jimmy Smit
Jimmy Smit
8 days ago

It makes sense but does seem a little unfair, considering some acts are already confirmed, something that would usually only be the case after the draw, meaning that selection processes could take into account and be swayed by what other semi-finalists have already selected.

Last edited 8 days ago by Jimmy Smit
Azaad
Azaad
7 days ago
Reply to  Jimmy Smit

But aren’t there seasons where we know several ESC acts in the year preceding the contest and thus before the semi final allocation? Flashing back to 2017, I definitely remember Hovig, O’G3NE, Jana Burcheska, Blanche and DiHaj being selected before the semi final allocation draw for ESC 2017, so we knew who was representing Cyprus, The Netherlands, North Macedonia, Belgium and Azerbaijan, to take one season as an example.

Jimmy Smit
Jimmy Smit
7 days ago
Reply to  Azaad

That’s true, but these examples tend to be exceptions rather than the norm. For ESC 2017 the draw took place in January 2017, but for ESC 2021 the draw will have taken place 16 months before in January 2020. Knowing 5 of 42 participants in advance of ESC 2017’s semi final draw is a very small number compared to the higher number of participants already delcared or reconfirmed, with a much longer run in time, for ESC 2021. I see what you’re saying, it’s not the end of the world and there’s certainly precedent for it — but just not… Read more »

Last edited 7 days ago by Jimmy Smit
esc43
esc43
8 days ago

MBV123 It’s the rules of the competition. A song can’t be released before September 2020.

esc43
esc43
8 days ago

Predictable decision as participating countries remain the same as 2020.. It wouldn’t make sense to do a new one. I think it’s right too

Ashton
Ashton
8 days ago

holy crap. I just found out that Luka was dropped from Hooverphonic OVER ZOOM with NO PRIOR WARNING. holy crap. I knew I was right when I called Alex Callier a douchebag but I didn’t want to be this right.

Joe
Joe
8 days ago
Reply to  Ashton

Yeah, I just saw that. I love Hooverphonic’s music, but that was pretty freaking cold.

Una
Una
8 days ago

Actually I am afraid that drought is coming with so many internally selected artists. This could be the most boring Eurovision season of all. I expect so much secrecy thus so little music up to March.

Azaad
Azaad
8 days ago
Reply to  Una

MelFest will start by mid January so that’ll be something, and other selections will be running from then until March. We’ll be getting a NF from France which we didn’t have last time. Also, Cyprus and Germany have yet to announce their new artists, and North Macedonia and Ireland could still replace their internally selected artists, leading to some excitement.

Una
Una
8 days ago
Reply to  Azaad

I agree but that’s still not that much. It should be ok, that much I can say considering the circumstances.
Anyways I am more curious about the secrecy sorrounding internally picked acts. A few countries are going straight for the win in 2021 and those are the ones who will try the hardest. Tip: they’ve tried before using nearly the same strategies and pretty much the same networks involved.

Leo
Leo
8 days ago
Reply to  Una

I think the cancellation of the ESC has allowed for the connection of fans with the 20-30 acts that would return (I expect 28). But what of acts that release new music at the turn of the year not to do with ESC that could become their entry?

Joe
Joe
8 days ago
Reply to  Leo

Think of it this way: we know for sure that there are national selections going on in Albania, Croatia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Italy, Lithuania, Norway, Portugal, and Sweden. There are going to be public selection shows for the internally-selected artists from Israel and Ukraine (I believe). And we know for sure we’re getting new artists for Belarus, Cyprus, and Germany. So there’s plenty of stuff we don’t know yet, besides the countries we know nothing about yet (Armenia, Ireland, North Macedonia, Poland, Serbia, and the UK).

Una
Una
8 days ago
Reply to  Leo

Yeah, there is connection between fans and returning artists for sure. So many of us here seem to be huge fans of the different artists. And wish for the return of those unconfirmed so far. *UK and Russia, yes I am looking at you!!!!!!* I don’t expect artists to release music just like that and then announce one song or another is their entry for Eurovision. I think I’ve read here about one or two occasions in the last decade. But it could work – release more songs, see which one gets better reception and then blindside the competition with… Read more »

Barry
Barry
8 days ago
Reply to  Una

Internal selection has been a victory for the Netherlands in recent years.

Erasmus
Erasmus
8 days ago
Reply to  Barry

I literally love internal selection – 90% of times they serve quality.

Leo
Leo
8 days ago
Reply to  Erasmus

It has its advantages, but there are plenty of misfires and failures, and staging can backfire, like Ireland and Armenia in 2019.
It also reduces emotional investment in the songs.

Last edited 8 days ago by Leo
Sniper K-Wolf
Sniper K-Wolf
8 days ago
Reply to  Barry

Not for Sweden, Portugal and Ukraine (excepted for Ruslana in 2004).

Leo
Leo
8 days ago
Reply to  Sniper K-Wolf

Publicly selected: Sweden and Russia in 2012, Denmark 2013, Sweden 2015 and 2016, Ukraine 2016, Portugal, Moldova and Hungary 2017, Czech 2018, Italy and Norway 2019, Armenia and Iceland 2020
Hybrid: Serbia and Israel 2015, Israel 2018, Malta 2020
Internal: Austria and Netherlands 2014, Belgium and Australia 2015, Bulgaria and France 2016, Belgium 2017, Cyprus and Austria 2018, Netherlands and Azerbaijan 2019, Bulgaria 2020

Sniper K-Wolf
Sniper K-Wolf
7 days ago
Reply to  Leo

The only winners in your list are Austria and Netherlands (except hybrid for Israël). So in one decade 7 was publicly selectionned. Oddly you you forget that Italy won Juries in 2011 and Televoting in 2015 with San Remo.

So this is the same situation than 2000s with only 2 winners from internal selection (Turkey 2003 and Ukraine 2004).

Leo
Leo
7 days ago
Reply to  Sniper K-Wolf

I only mentioned specific strong faves of mine, hence I mentioned Soldi, my 3rd fave of 2019, and yet not Grande Amore, which was good but not one of my personal faves.

Una
Una
8 days ago

Some things to anticipate: 1. which countries will come back with returning writers (not the 2020 ones, but the others); 2. which countries with internal selection will hold on up until the deadline for submission; 3. will there be any country that will not release their song up until the contest? and 4. how many songs altogether will we know the soonest? Albania could be the first country in December 2020, then maybe Finland and Israel in February? Any other dates for December-January-February?

Erasmus
Erasmus
8 days ago
Reply to  Una

Well Norway, Croatia and also Slovenia and Lithuania usually release their songs in February. and also countries can’t release their songs up until the contest, they have to be released till the 13th of March I think

Una
Una
8 days ago
Reply to  Erasmus

Erasmus, I don’t understand your last point.

Erasmus
Erasmus
8 days ago
Reply to  Una

3. will there be any country that will not release their song up until the contest? I’m referring to this question. It’s impossible that any country decides to release their song after the 13th of March, and the contest is in May, so the song will have to be released before. Or do I not understand your 3rd point? 🙂 haha
?

Una
Una
8 days ago
Reply to  Erasmus

You did understand my third point and now I understand your answer better. But where does it say that songs *must* be released after whatever the deadline for submisssion to EBU is? Because that’s what I know: submission to EBU by xx March together with staging concept is obligatory. But not to the public.
Do you remember some composers’ discontent about the cancellation right after the deadline in 2020? They had submitted the songs thus they could not used them for 2021. Two songs I think because another one or two had been released before the deadline.

Louka
Louka
8 days ago
Reply to  Una

France has plan to hold the selection late January or early February according to several articles. It will include around 10 acts, which are set to be revealed probably soon after the JESC. The lineup is apparently almost complete, considering the feedback from several appliers who sent an entry, explaining that they were not retained to the “next step of the casting” and so have already revealed their song (for some of them). One of the potential candidates also explained in an interview that the delegation received between “1500 and 3000 applications”. Among others rumours is the fact that host… Read more »

Sven
Sven
8 days ago

semi 1 looks terrifying, even without knowing songs, its gonna be a bloodbath

Erasmus
Erasmus
8 days ago
Reply to  Sven

it’s lowkey gonna be even stronger than the first semi in 2018.

Joe
Joe
8 days ago
Reply to  Sven

It pretty much would’ve been with the songs we had this year, since besides a decent group of no-doubt qualifiers, there were more than a few really good songs that probably would’ve been on the borderline (Australia, Ireland, and Belgium probably could’ve gone either way, and I would’ve been sad if any of them missed the final).

Erasmus
Erasmus
8 days ago
Reply to  Joe

yep and I think some countries might even up their game for next year e.g. (Belarus, Croatia, Macedonia, Cyprus, Slovenia and Ireland)

Leo
Leo
8 days ago
Reply to  Joe

How I expected 2020 to go Heat 1 Certain: Malta, Russia, Lithuania, Azerbaijan Likely: Ukraine, Romania, Sweden, Israel Marginal: Australia, Norway, Belgium, Croatia, Ireland Eliminated: Belarus, Cyprus, Nm, Slovenia Heat 2 Certain: Iceland, Armenia, Bulgaria Likely: Switzerland, Latvia, who of Serbia or Greece had better staging Marginal: Denmark, Czech, Finland, Georgia, Poland, whichever of Serbia or Greece had weaker staging, whichever of Portugal or Austria the jury liked more Eliminated: San Marino, Albania, Moldova, Estonia, whichever of Portugal or Austria jury liked less. But obviously with up to 13 new acts and several returnees going for a style change, and… Read more »

Last edited 8 days ago by Leo
Indiana07
Indiana07
7 days ago
Reply to  Leo

I don’t think Armenia would have qualified. The revamp improved the song but there wasn’t still a big chorous. It was quite uncatchy. But they had a lot of diaspora-friendly countries in the semi final so I’m not 100% sure.

Leo
Leo
7 days ago
Reply to  Indiana07

It was very catchy actually (and she also released a follow up song on the same weekend as ESAL, called Dolla, which, whilst not as good, was VERY catchy, and also perfectly in place with what is in the charts), and, far more importantly, was, along with Iceland and Malta, the song which sounded most like it belonged in the charts. It sounds convincingly like something Little Mix or Ariana would do, there is more to the lyrics than meets the eye, the sang part in the pre chorus is superb, the production is excellent. No question that this would… Read more »

Indiana07
Indiana07
7 days ago
Reply to  Leo

I think, this song has a good production but it cannot compensate the bad songwriting. This song starts promising but the chorous is very diasppointing. I can see it only as a diaspora qualifier or maybe a jury qualifier. I’m confident, it would’ve done very poorly in the televote (except in countries which have a massive Armenian diaspora of course).
It had a potential for good staging tho.

Leo
Leo
7 days ago
Reply to  Indiana07

I think the songwriting, which was done by Athena herself, on a bus, in 30 minutes, is good, with #metoo lyrics (“I don’t like it I’m gonna say no”) and lyrics encouraging patience (“I know I’m gonna make it to the top”), as well as lyrics about individualism and sexual lyrics that are more subtle than Fuego’s “You got my pelican flying”. The chorus is very simple, but plenty of songs that are popular have this, and Little Mix songs Joan Of Arc and Wasabi have very similar Choruses to this, and like this, have very dynamic, well-sung pre Choruses.… Read more »

Dimos
Dimos
8 days ago

That means we already know 11/18 contestants of Semi-Final 2

KESC
KESC
8 days ago
Reply to  Dimos

Isn’t it 10, or am I wrong? 😀
Austria, Moldova, San Marino, Iceland, Czech Republic, Greece, Bulgaria, Switzerland, Latvia and Georgia?

Guess Serbia and Poland will also send their 2020 acts.

Dimos
Dimos
8 days ago
Reply to  KESC

Oh, I thought Alicja had been confirmed for Poland as well. My bad

Leo
Leo
8 days ago
Reply to  Dimos

Her, Armenia (my fave) and Ireland have all had the act and HOD both express the will to participate, but the kid’s contest for Poland, the difficulties of returning from Greece due to their differences in handling Covid for Armenia (as well as the debilitating war forcing Athena to put back the release of a promised ballad), and that Ireland usually do both act and song at once, is why those 3 aren’t yet named. I have also openly expressed the hope for Armenia to do a song selection because of her wide possibilities and love for her fans, avoiding… Read more »

Last edited 8 days ago by Leo
123
123
8 days ago

The draw is irrelevant because, as the old saying goes, even Greece and Cyprus have to give someone points from 1-10 in the final… The point being that even with sketchy backstage dealings, if you have a good song, you’ll get through cause nobody has 10 friends to give their points to.

Azaad
Azaad
8 days ago

Also, considering what’s happened/could happen again in the Caucasus, it’s good that Armenia and Azerbaijan remain in separate semis.

Azaad
Azaad
8 days ago

If broadcasters wanted to drop artists, then you can’t let the returning artists keep their songs.

123
123
8 days ago
Reply to  Azaad

And what if a certain artists didn’t want to be stuck in a Eurovision project for another year and a half? What then? That country woudn’t be allowed to participate? Your idea would never work…

Azaad
Azaad
8 days ago

I guess if people can use the same tickets from 2020 for 2021 this makes sense from a financial/ethical perspective. But it does zap the magic off from the season, especially as this was one event which could’ve been done completely virtually.

Leo
Leo
8 days ago
Reply to  Azaad

I think only half the tickets will be used (they said that a draw would reallocate them), but it depends on how to return to normality at the right pace post-Covid.

Erasmus
Erasmus
8 days ago

Shame:( Semi final 1 was tough in 2020 and it will be even harder in 2021 with Romania, Sweden, Russia, Australia, Malta and Belgium (juries will rank them top 5 for sure) all being lock qualifiers. And Cyprus (probably another Alex P. song), Norway, Azerbaijan, Lithuania and Israel (11 countries!!) also probably qualifying, not to mention that Vasil may work with Borislav Milanov on his song, and other surprises… kind of feeling bad for Ireland, Belarus and Slovenia all of them will probably not qualify.. second semi is way more open, but lock Q are Bulgaria, Iceland and Switzerland and… Read more »

Frisian esc
Frisian esc
8 days ago
Reply to  Erasmus

I mean countries with big troubles often want to out do themselves at eurovision. If there is one year where Belarus is gonna decide to suddenly become good at eurovision it is this one xD

Zupa
Zupa
8 days ago
Reply to  Erasmus

it depends on songs. you never know what wins Melfest, lmao, maybe something wild will happen. You have not even heard Eesti Laul songs and you are already saying that Yuri is a qualifier, he got last once already, what makes you think that this time he will definitely have what it takes to even win Eesti Laul? I am from Latvia, but I would not count Samanta as definite qualifier. I love Still Breathing, but still was not sure it would qualify, anything could have happened. Also, there are chances that the new song will be less impressive and… Read more »

Erasmus
Erasmus
8 days ago
Reply to  Zupa

I’m just predicting things, of course. About Jüri – well I have loved every single song he’s released, that’s why I have so much faith in him.

And didn’t Samanta recently confirmed in an interview that her song is better than “still breathing”?

Lithuania will Q, because the Roop will win and if Jurijus almost qualified last year(theoretically did since there was a mistake by one juror), I’m sure the Roop are going to as well – again these are predictions with some basis in them.

and come on, Sweden will qualify, and nothing wild will happen hahah. 🙂

Sniper K-Wolf
Sniper K-Wolf
8 days ago
Reply to  Erasmus

Did you really believe that juries will be generous with Azerbaijan and Russia after the last events in Nagorno-Karabagh? I wouldn’t be surprised if someone like the “Armenian-Jamala” would win the contest.

Erasmus
Erasmus
8 days ago
Reply to  Sniper K-Wolf

yes, I really don’t think that will affect the voting of the juries (too much)

Leo
Leo
8 days ago
Reply to  Sniper K-Wolf

Regarding this, I have stated my opinions on what Armenia could do, and what they deserve, clearly several times, and don’t want to overdo it, and it has nothing to do with politics. It has everything to do with a sexy woman whose self made song is the sort that Mixers, Arianators and Normani fans like. This is better and more enjoyable than politics.

Last edited 8 days ago by Leo
Una
Una
8 days ago
Reply to  Sniper K-Wolf

NO. OMG just no. Let the best song win. No more politics, please.

Leo
Leo
8 days ago
Reply to  Una

Agreed. And I want the UK to channel its instincts into ESC like Israel have done.

KESC
KESC
8 days ago
Reply to  Sniper K-Wolf

Why wouldn’t they be generous with Russia and Azerbaijan, but with Armenia though?

Helen
Helen
8 days ago

i guess semi one still remains a bloodbath …

Una
Una
8 days ago

One thing to tick off the Eurovision calendar. Well, this decision makes sense as per the ticket holders argument. Otherwise, it’s six months for them preparations.

James
James
8 days ago

Because some broadcasters would prefer choosing another song and artist through their respective national selections, and you would know by now that many other countries have opted to do so.

Carrying over songs from a canceled contest would give them an unfair advantage over countries who chose to not retain their artists.

Besides, as public broadcasters, they serve as platforms to promote homegrown artists and local music to their viewers, which is more important now than ever considering the damage done by the pandemic to the livelihood of members of the music industry, especially gigs.

Leo
Leo
8 days ago
Reply to  James

I also feel that my fave acts, particularly the ones that write their own songs (Armenia, Iceland) would get tired of spending so long flogging single songs, when they want to evolve, and their songs could be seen (unfairly) as time capsules.

Zupa
Zupa
8 days ago
Reply to  James

but some artists might have other plans for next year. not everything in their lives revolve around Eurovision

Una
Una
8 days ago
Reply to  Zupa

Exactly.

Una
Una
8 days ago
Reply to  James

The EBU cannot decide everything for the broadcasters and NOT on the artists except for the age. Some artists may not even want to participate again in 2021. I am more concerned about political voting and secrecies and such and how could they affect outcomes.

KESC
KESC
8 days ago

Probably the best decision concerning Armenia and Azerbaijan right now.

Joe
Joe
8 days ago

Works for me. I was really satisfied with the way it was split up. Even if SF1 was a little top-heavy for Eastern Europe, the big duos and blocs were mostly split up.

ESC8
ESC8
8 days ago

At first I thought that the exact place would remain unchanged, and this would be totally wrong, but since it’s just the semi and the half that they’re participating in, then it’s ok.

Leo
Leo
8 days ago

I do wonder the effects of *The new acts like Albania, Belarus, Cyprus, Denmark, Norway and Portugal *2020 acts involved in the selections anew, such as Estonia *2020 acts doing new styles, such as Moldova. I know that my faves won’t have the same script stuck to, and I could find new heroes, but I’m glad UK can vote in the heat that will involve Dadi, Benny and Stefania, and on which I have long worked on the assumption it would include Athena and Hurricane, even though COVID, the economy, logistics and the debilitating war in Armenia’s case – which… Read more »

Last edited 8 days ago by Leo
Olivia
Olivia
8 days ago

Bit disappointed that we wont have the ceremony and that my country, Ireland, wont have the chance to get a better draw. But I fully understand why they’re reusing it. Hopefully if Ireland sends a good enough song (which is possible), we can make it out anyway. I look forward to having Eurovision back all the same.

Joe
Joe
8 days ago
Reply to  Olivia

Ireland qualified over Azerbaijan, Armenia, Greece, and Belgium back in 2018 and I was the only one who saw it coming. It all comes down to the song.

Leo
Leo
8 days ago
Reply to  Joe

My fave semi final (that took place) ever, with Israel, Cyprus, Czech, Austria, Estonia and Ireland all being so brilliant.

Joe
Joe
8 days ago
Reply to  Leo

That was an air-tight semifinal. You could come up with fifteen individual combinations of potential finalists and unless they had Belarus and Iceland they’d all deserve it to varying degrees. And yes, all the ones you mentioned were my favorites as well!

Leo
Leo
8 days ago
Reply to  Joe

Greece and Switzerland were the best to not qualify, and Azerbaijan and Belgium were hard to rule out, but I think all 10 qualifiers were obviously deserved.

Joe
Joe
8 days ago
Reply to  Leo

Agreed. In hindsight, even if there are some I like more than others (not super huge on Bulgaria or Finland), every single one of them totally deserved to qualify. I couldn’t watch live because I was in America and it’s geoblocked (and I didn’t know about VPNs) so I was just watching Wikipedia update, and when Ireland was called I screamed and jumped for joy.

Leo
Leo
8 days ago
Reply to  Joe

For me, Israel’s win proved everything was possible (I have Israeli roots on one side)

Maya G
Maya G
8 days ago
Reply to  Leo

It was such a tough semi, probably the most competitive since 2008.
Funny that after the allocation draw of 2018 the consensus was that the other semi is obviously going to be the Bloodbath, with the strongest countries geopolitically and record-wise are in it.

Joe
Joe
8 days ago
Reply to  Maya G

Conversely, the second semi seemed much more clear-cut, with maybe a couple of wildcards (Serbia, Slovenia, the Netherlands, and on the non-qualifier side Malta, Latvia, and Romania).

Maya G
Maya G
7 days ago
Reply to  Joe

Don’t forget Russia.
Also, almost none of the participants or songs were known at this point so these assumptions were based solely on geopolitics and statistics. Countries like Azerbaijan and Armenia were expected to sail to the final from such a good (on paper) draw.

Last edited 7 days ago by Maya G
Jofty
Jofty
8 days ago
Reply to  Olivia

What do you mean “better draw”? You mean in a semi-final with fewer powerhouses where a weak song will look less bad? Apparently the lack of interest in Ireland is put forward as a reason not to have a selection process.