With less than four weeks to go until rehearsals start, Lisbon 2018 is simmering away. The Altice Arena is in the possession of RTP. Eurovision versions of songs are being released. The final batch of ticket sales to the public happen in mere hours.
And the producers have released the performance order for the two semi-finals. Here are some thoughts.
Aside from being supporters of a random draw (which we say every year), our analysis predicts the following:
Easily qualifying: Czechia, Israel, Estonia, Cyprus, Finland, Armenia
Probably qualifying: Albania, Lithuania, Croatia, Ireland
Not qualifying: Azerbaijan, Iceland, Belgium, Belarus, Macedonia, Austria, Greece, Switzerland
Some of these are not at all related to the performance order. Estonia and Israel, in particular, will qualify from anywhere in the order (if they deliver on the night). While the ex-Soviet bloc tends to do really well in any semi-final, Belarus’ diction is terrible and the Azeri song isn’t suited to the singers obvious talent.
Acoustic Ireland (Source: YouTube/2 35 Film Production)