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Semi Final Two: Qualify Market Review

Updated: May 8, 2021

Semi Final 2 now with Bulgaria and Switzerland deemed the dead certs here. We are expecting both to have staging to lift the performances, but both will need as much to get televotes. Should some silly odds on non qualification occur (let's say 50-1) I may tickle both of these untested internally selected tracks to drop out, but the issue is that this on paper is the weaker semi and they should sail through.

Iceland is qualifying. Finland I have some irrational doubts over, mainly because of the genre, but I think it will have enough to be in the final. Not touching 1.1 however for either, such short odds make my stomach feel queasy at the best of times.

Greece at 1.2 should have a coherent enough package, with or without the rumoured epic staging, to make it. Same can't be said for Senhit and San Marino. I love love love this track but Flo Rida is an anomaly that may not work and frankly speaking Senhit's Road to Rotterdam, while flashy, suggests something too OTT even for the televote. There is a 6.5 available with Bet365 on a NQ, which I have grabbed before this article releases. Serhat only qualified last time on the back of some random televote scoring. Senhit has done the rounds in Poland and Albania however, and will be interesting to see if that does result in not just televote but also jury support to see it squeeze into the final. It's a close one either way.

The shorthand for Moldova is that it will qualify, because reasons. I don't like that artistry style at all and suspect Natalia's look may be the wrong kind of sexy, but there's probably a residual 100 points lying around jury rooms in Greece, Bulgaria et al to see if through.

Those are the seven songs most fancied. Serbia is a weird one, in that it is going to do very well in its core demographic but struggle elsewhere. This sound is 12 points guaranteed from the Balkans and diaspora (note Switzerland and Austria in this semi as well) but possibly plenty of zeroes elsewhere. If it qualifies I can see it in the top 15 in the Grand Final, even if it just scrapes through in 10th place here. Serbia present a real borderline case, meaning the 3s not to qualify could become value if we can pick some to rise up the rankings.

Albania is currently odds on, I assume for the same rationale that there's enough key diaspora here to see it over the line, and that Sasha Jean Baptiste will give enough sparkle to see it through. Perhaps, but I'm not convinced there's a call to action and I have it as a NQ at the moment, although not by much.

Austria is around Evens because of the expectation that Amen may be staged in such a way to hoover up the jury points too. I quite like the feel of the song, but other than the bridge there’s little remarkable or outstanding, and the vocal 'capacity' as the EBU call it isn’t that high. I’d fancy this as an outsider, not as a 50/50.

Who from the pack can make it? Denmark being drawn last has fans, but realistically it is needing to get at least top 5 in the semi televote to qualify as this will be too dated for today’s juries. The Czech Republic likely needs a similar televote appeal which I’m less and less convinced on each day - something tells me that despite Benny’s charisma (and one hell of a catchy song) that Greece’s position in the running order is there to destroy it just afterwards. You all know my love for this, and I see the 3s I got on last week’s podcast is now about 2.7, but that’s a fair rather than stellar price. The current momentum Iceland gets is worrying too, as I imagine they capture the same televote market.

Estonia has shortened in and, despite being drawn 2nd, I wouldn’t be surprised for this to qualify. I feel it is too short now as the song is too forgettable however. More likely though is Portugal that has a singer with a great voice fronting The Black Mamba, 2.7 (CoolBet) is decent value, and if anything was to randomly win a jury vote it is this one.

Georgia I completely discount. Latvia would need to have staging to make me invest, and Poland would need to be a longer price to interest me. This is because of the track record and loyal diaspora voting, but I have no idea if the diaspora will alienate the terribly unpopular Rafal or not.

Again, if pushed, the pre-rehearsal predictions are

Switzerland

Bulgaria

Finland

Iceland

Greece

San Marino

Moldova

Portugal

Serbia

Czech Republic

But that last place for the Czech Republic could have gone to a whole bunch of those above, such as Austria, Denmark or Estonia. If Austria, Denmark or Estonia make it into the final from this semi, they would be a good consideration for a last place bet in the final.

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