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: Norway, Russia, Moldova, Sweden, Slovenia
Probably qualifying: Romania, Serbia, Netherlands, Malta
Not qualifying: San Marino, Denmark, Georgia, Poland, Hungary, Latvia, Montenegro, Ukraine
Some of these might surprise. Ukraine’s only done well at the Eurovision when a frock’s involved (women vocalist or Verka). Poland’s diaspora support is flattened out and the national final performance was a vocal car crash. Norway, Moldova and Sweden seem like they would qualify from anywhere in the order.