Image Source: Sapo
We now know all the finalists for the Eurovision Song Contest 2017. Time to predict who is going to win! While Italy has been the clear favourite from the moment Francesco Gabbani was selected, he dropped to the second spot with the bookmakers now and as we learned last year with Russia, the main favourite does not always end up winning. A Bit of Pop Music predicts the results of the grand final based on the bookmakers, iTunes and Spotify charts, and the starting positions during the show.
While the bookmakers are usually pretty accurate when it comes to predicting the winner of Eurovision, last year they did not foresee Ukraine’s victory, although they did give winner Jamala a spot in the top 3. After being number 1 for months, 1 day prior to the final, Francesco Gabbani from Italy had to give up their spot on top, which is now taken over by Salvador Sobral from Portugal. Portugal might well be the Ukraine of this year and come out on top after stunning performances on the Eurovision stage. We have to keep in mind though that most viewers haven’t seen Italy’s full performance yet, as they did not have to participate in the semi finals.
According to the bookmakers, Bulgaria’s Kristian Kostov will complete the top 3 of this year’s final. Blanche from Belgium was in top 5 for months but saw her odds falling after the rehearsals started. After she qualified for the final and started to make an impact in some iTunes charts around Europe, she climbed back to the 4th spot. Sweden is expected to make it into top 5 as well. The United Kingdom climbed the bookmakers lists ever since Lucie Jones first stepped on the Eurovision stage and they are now in a respectable 6th position, although it is hard to predict what this traditional ballad will do with the televoters at home. At the moment Romania, Croatia, France and Armenia are expected to fill up the spaces in the top 10.
iTunes & Spotify
If we look at the iTunes charts around Europe, we see a handful of potential winners. One of them is bookies favourite Portugal. At the time of writing he was charting in the iTunes charts of 12 countries. He is closely followed by Belgian teenager Blanche, who reached the top 100 in 11 countries, including a top 5 position in Estonia. Moreover, she is the only Eurovision artist who reached a spot in Spotify’s worldwide viral charts, with five spots in the Spotify top 100 of other European countries. Based on these charts, it seems likely for Belgium to reach top 5 of the televoting results. According to press in Kiev her performances have improved since the semi final, so if the juries get on board with this, she sure is an outsider to end up in top 3. Bulgaria is currently charting in the top 100 in eight different countries, including a spot in the top 5 in Sweden, which confirms his role as one of the favourites.
A perhaps more surprising iTunes success, is Romania, who reached the top 100 in eight countries, including top 10 in Lithuania and Estonia. It is hard to predict how well the yodel act of Ilinca and Alex Florea is going to do with juries, but it seems they have a real shot at reaching top 3 with televoting. Norway’s JOWST reached the top 100 in five countries, including an impressive nr. 2 position in Estonia. Sweden’s Robin Bengtsson and Hungary’s Joci Papai are found in five and six European iTunes charts, while Italy is only charting in four other countries. Again, we have to keep in mind here that Francesco Gabbani has not performed the full European audience on live television yet.
The first thing that comes to mind looking at the running order is how closely Italy and Portugal will perform after one another. Poor Anja from Denmark is stuck in between them, which is about the worst starting position she could have gotten. Towards the end we will get a strong run of favourites with Belgium, Sweden and Bulgaria performing after one another. After that it is Alma from France who will close the show. Hopefully she won’t suffer too much from her starting position and at least she is fresh in the minds of the audience.
Candidates for top 10 like Artsvik from Armenia and girl band O’G3NE from The Netherlands have to perform quite early on the night (5th and 6th), which would usually be seen as a disadvantage, but with quite some favourites saved for the end, the earlier you make an expression, the better! I’d say Lucie Jones from the UK has a good starting position at 18 as well in between the completely different acts from Norway and Cyprus.
I predict it will be a three horse race between Portugal, Bulgaria and Italy. As Portugal is the most unique and singular out of these three, I think Salvador Sobral will win as he has potential to do greatly with juries and televoters all around Europe. I expect Bulgaria to do the same with more points from Eastern Europe than the West, coming in at second position. Italy will complete the top 3 while Belgium and Romania will end up in top 5, mostly thanks to the televoting. I could see either Armenia or Sweden sneak into the top 5 as well!