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Louis Walsh: “I thought Brendan was going to sail through”

Last night, Louis Walsh appeared on the latest episode of RTÉ’s Saturday Night with Miriam, a talk show hosted by TV personality Miriam O’Callaghan. On the show, Louis spoke about everything to do with Ireland at the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest. Of course, Louis was one of the key people in charge of selecting the Irish entry for Kyiv, Dying to Try by Brendan Murray.

“Some singers are afraid of not doing well at Eurovision”

According to RTÉ, Louis admitted to Miriam that he is “still none the wiser” as to why Ireland failed to qualify for the grand final this year. “He sang so well. I chose the song and the singer… I thought he was going to sail through.” Nevertheless, it seems that Brendan and Dying to Try may not have been Louis’ ideal choice of singer and song. Louis explained that “some of the singers don’t want to touch [Eurovision] because they’re afraid of not doing well at it”.

In addition, well-known songwriters are turning down the opportunity. Louis says he contacted several but they just “didn’t want to know”. It is no wonder that RTÉ is having to outsource their songs from countries where Eurovision is looked upon favourably rather than the opposite. Dying to Try was co-written by Swedish songwriter Jörgen Elofsson.

Louis is adamant Ireland must continue to participate

These comments are all very similar to ones made by the team at the BBC in recent years, and a lot of effort is going to have to go into Eurovision to turn its reputation around. Louis himself states that he believes that “everywhere” has the same problem. Nevertheless, despite his failure to guide Ireland back to the Eurovision final for the first time since 2013, Louis is adamant that RTÉ should continue to participate.

Finally, when asked how Ireland can win again, Louis said the following:

“By just sticking at it. I picked a ballad this year because we always won with ballads – Johnny Logan and Linda [Martin] and Niamh Kavanagh and stuff. So, I thought we were going to do really, really well. I still think RTÉ should do it.”

In Kyiv, Ireland finished 13th in the second semi-final. Brendan Murray accumulated a total of 86 points, finishing just 15 points behind the final qualifier – Anja Nissen from Denmark. Hopefully, this is a sign of progress from RTE.

What do you make of Louis’ comments? Let us know in the comments section below and via our social media pages @ESCXTRA!

Ryan Cobb

My first memory of watching the Eurovision Song Contest was back in 2001 and, over the years, my passion and enthusiasm for the contest has very much turned into an obsession. I adore music and I love geography, so this contest is a natural fit for me. If la la loving Eurovision was a crime, I'd certainly be a criminal!

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