Editorials & Opinion

🇪🇺 Rediscovering 14 years of Eurovision odds: We analyse and reminisce

🇸🇪 Malmö 2013

Next up, it’s time to look back at the odds ahead of the 2013 contest. These odds were recorded from Oddschecker on April 18th, 30 days before the final on May 18th.

It is important to note that this is the first recording used from Oddschecker. With this website displaying only the best possible odds from a variety of different bookmakers, the range between the odds in the top 15 is much larger.If just a single bookmaker was recorded as in previous years, it is likely the range would be similar to what we have seen between 2007 and 2012.

RankOddsCountryEntryEurovision
Placing
16/4🇩🇰 DenmarkEmmelie de Forest – Only Teardrops1st
28/1🇳🇴 NorwayMargaret Berger – I Feed You My Love4th
312/1🇺🇦 UkraineZlata Ognevich – Gravity3rd
416/1🇷🇺 RussiaDina Garipova – What If5th
516/1🇸🇪 SwedenRobin Stjernberg – You14th
619/1🇳🇱 The NetherlandsAnouk – Birds9th
725/1🇩🇪 GermanyCascada – Glorious21st
825/1🇬🇪 GeorgiaNodi Tatishvili & Sophie Gelovani – Waterfall15th
925/1🇮🇹 ItalyMarco Mengoni – L’Essenziale7th
1033/1🇦🇿 AzerbaijanFarid Mammadov – Hold Me2nd
1140/1🇸🇲 San MarinoValentina Monetta – Crisalide (Vola)SF (11th)
1250/1🇬🇧 United KingdomBonnie Tyler – Believe In Me19th
1366/1🇮🇪 IrelandRyan Dolan – Only Love Survives26th
1466/1🇧🇾 BelarusAlyona Lanskaya – Solayoh16th
1575/1🇬🇷 GreeceKoza Mostra feat. Agathon Iakovidis – Alcohol Is Free6th

Analysis

  • The winning entry was placed 1st in the odds.
  • 80% of the eventual top 5 at Eurovision placed inside the top 5 of the odds.
  • 67% of the eventual top 15 at Eurovision placed inside the top 15 of the odds.

This time around Denmark were the runaway favourites and scored a fairly easy victory. The odds were more reliable than ever in 2013, with only Azerbaijan of the eventual top 5 finishers not amongst the top 5 in the odds. Farid’s stage performance is often considered a key reason behind the success of Hold Me. This was, of course, a factor that wouldn’t have been known about the month before. One of the most notable talking points here was San Marino‘s failure to qualify. Fan favourite Valentina Monetta was another returning artist to be over-predicted by the odds. Although Crisalide (Vola) was a much more competitive entry than The Social Network Song was a year earlier.

The other major talking point was the under-performance of Germany. Cascada was the most well-known act prior the contest alongside the United Kingdom‘s Bonnie Tyler and received significant media coverage particularly in Western Europe where the majority of these bookmakers are based. Both of these acts failed to live up to expectations. When taking into account Engelbert’s performance in 2012, it seems like gamblers are wrongly associating media coverage and artist popularity with good results. After all, it is a song contest!

🇩🇰 Copenhagen 2014

Next up, it’s time to look back at the odds ahead of the 2014 contest. These odds were recorded from Oddschecker on April 7th, 33 days before the final on May 10th.

RankOddsCountryEntryEurovision
Placing
16/4🇦🇲 ArmeniaAram MP3 – Not Alone4th
211/2🇸🇪 SwedenSanna Nielsen – Undo3rd
312/1🇩🇰 DenmarkBasim – Cliché Love Song9th
412/1🇳🇴 NorwayCarl Espen – Silent Storm8th
518/1🇭🇺 HungaryAndrás Kállay-Saunders – Running5th
620/1🇬🇧 United KingdomMolly – Children Of The Universe17th
720/1🇺🇦 UkraineMariya Yaremchuk – Tick-Tock6th
820/1🇦🇿 AzerbaijanDilara Kazimova – Start A Fire22nd
925/1🇧🇪 BelgiumAxel Hirsoux – MotherSF (14th)
1025/1🇷🇴 RomaniaPaula Seling & OVI – Miracle12th
1140/1🇷🇺 RussiaTolmachevy Sisters – Shine7th
1266/1🇮🇹 ItalyEmma Marrone – La Mia Città21st
1366/1🇬🇷 GreeceFreaky Fortune feat. RiskyKidd – Rise Up20th
1466/1🇮🇱 IsraelMei Finegold – Same HeartSF (14th)
1566/1🇮🇪 IrelandCan-Linn feat. Kasey Smith – HeartbeatSF (12th)

Analysis

  • The winning entry was placed outside the top 15 in the odds.
  • 60% of the eventual top 5 at Eurovision placed inside the top 5 of the odds.
  • 53% of the eventual top 15 at Eurovision placed inside the top 15 of the odds.

2014 has become the go-to contest when it comes to arguing that odds aren’t always correct. Both Austria and The Netherlands were outside the top 15 of the odds a month prior to them finishing top 2 in Copenhagen. Furthermore, the live performances of the Austrian and Dutch entries have become leading examples in how to perfectly stage a Eurovision entry. As the years have progressed, stages have offered more and more options for delegations to enhance their songs. This is something bookmakers cannot predict and 2014 was the first year they were truly stung.

Elsewhere, Belgium was the key underperformer as Axel Hirsoux failed to progress from his semi-final. Even though these odds are for victory, they perhaps suggested that Ireland and Israel were also expected to make it to the grand final. Arguably the live performance and running order draw respectively led to the failure of two fan favourites.

🇦🇹 Vienna 2015

Now it’s time to look back at the odds ahead of the 2015 contest. These odds were recorded from Oddschecker on April 25th, 28 days before the final on May 23rd.

RankOddsCountryEntryEurovision
Placing
16/4🇸🇪 SwedenMåns Zelmerlöw – Heroes1st
27/2🇮🇹 ItalyIl Volo – Grande Amore3rd
35/1🇦🇺 AustraliaGuy Sebastian – Tonight Again5th
410/1🇪🇪 EstoniaElina Born & Stig Rästa – Goodbye To Yesterday7th
525/1🇫🇮 FinlandPertti Kurikan Nimipäivät – Aina Mun PitääSF (16th)
625/1🇷🇺 RussiaPolina Gagarina – A Million Voices2nd
725/1🇳🇴 NorwayMørland & Debrah Scarlett – A Monster Like Me8th
825/1🇸🇮 SloveniaMaraaya – Here For You14th
933/1🇦🇿 AzerbaijanElnur Huseynov – Hour Of The Wolf12th
1050/1🇮🇸 IcelandMaria Olafs – UnbrokenSF (15th)
1150/1🇬🇧 United KingdomElectro Velvet – Still In Love With You24th
1250/1🇧🇪 BelgiumLoïc Nottet – Rhythm Inside4th
1366/1🇪🇸 SpainEdurne – Amanecer21st
1466/1🇦🇱 AlbaniaElhaida Dani – I’m Alive17th
1580/1🇦🇲 ArmeniaGenealogy – Face The Shadow16th

Analysis

  • The winning entry was placed 1st in the odds.
  • 60% of the eventual top 5 at Eurovision placed inside the top 5 of the odds.
  • 60% of the eventual top 15 at Eurovision placed inside the top 15 of the odds.

The bookmakers were back on form for 2015, correctly installing Sweden as the slight favourite. Italy was expected to be in close contention and rightly so. Il Volo won the televote only to lose out due to a lower jury ranking. Russia and Belgium were both in and around the top 10 and both gained extra momentum once we set foot in Vienna, something that wouldn’t have been known in April.

The main talking point in 2015 was the shock elimination of Finland in the semi-finals. Pertti Kurikan Nimipäivät was the act with the most pre-contest media coverage across Europe and the bookmakers responded accordingly. However, like with Cascada, Bonnie Tyler and Engelbert Humperdinck in recent years, the media coverage didn’t translate into success at the contest.

Our journey down memory lane continues on the next page…

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