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Eurovision: Semi-Final Allocation Draw

Host broadcaster, Danmarks Radio (DR) chose to stick with the producer-decided running order, so the 31 countries taking part in this year’s Eurovision semi-finals have just been drawn into the first or second halves of either semi-final one or two.

Three countries were drawn prior to today having made special requests to the EBU.  They include Norway and Sweden who wanted to ensure fair ticket allocation to fan of other nationalities.  Israel requested a place in the second semi-final, as the first semi falls on the nation’s independence day.

The allocation is as follows:

Semi Final 1: (Spain, France & Denmark will vote in this semi)

Sweden
Albania
Iceland
Russia
Latvia
Azerbaijan
Armenia
Estonia
==========
Belgium
Hungary
Moldova
Montenegro
San Marino
Portugal
Ukraine
Netherlands

Semi Final 2: (Germany, Italy & United Kingdom will vote in this semi)

Norway
Israel
Georgia
Austria
Lithuania
Poland
Malta
==========
FYR Macedonia
Finland
Ireland
Romania
Slovenia
Belarus
Greece
Switzerland

It’s still early days, but in your opinion, who’s been given a rough draw?

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Owner & Chief Editor   I’m a qualified designer and the official geek in the crew, dedicating most of my free time to keeping the ESCtips show on the road. My family routes allow me to support the UK, Ireland and Italy.

32 comments

  1. Early look and from that id say semi 1 is super tough and a great semi to lay some short priced favourites.
    Estonia could really struggle so I hope that wakes them up to whats needed.Sandra if she has the right song might be the difference for them this year as average wont be good enough.
    The scandi votes split in a super hard semi could see some shocks as well.Ukraine might be starting to wish they had sent jury bait ILLARIA.Should be ok but not certain.Russia will pull their friends 12s with a good song leaving them exposed.Azer wont be getting Maltas 12s this year.
    Albania look ok with a jury friendly song but would of been better in semi 2.They need to rework the song more than ever now.

    The 2nd semi looks much easier and quite lucky for Finland,.Id of been very tempted to lay Ireland but the UK and Germany voting in there might save them,,if the songs poor though il lay them probably.
    Belarus are finished in that semi as well without a song change and Georgia might struggle.Even Norway could be exposed in semi 2.They will need quality and cant take it for granted.

    Its also a rotten draw for Lithuania so the top Baltic bet could come down to if Estonia or Latvia can get out of the semi.

    Greece and Romania should be cracking top 3 bets for the 2nd semi.

    Outsider songs who qualify from semi 1 will be cracking top 10 bets as it looks super tough.

    • Seems to me that Albania is the country I’d be most confident of not qualifying from that draw. All of their biggest allies have either left the competition or are in semi 2. And I don’t think the song is particularly good either.

  2. Personally wouldn’t say Finland have been lucky. Yes, they got second half, but it’s now the fourth time in a row that neither of their two bestest friends (Estonia and Sweden) will be able to vote for them in the semi.

  3. True Andy but semi 2 is easier to get out of.Poland have tended to vote for Finland as do Hungary often.Semi 1 looks very hard.With the vote splits Finland would of really struggled.The ex soviets are also much more exposed in semi 2 and the 3 from the big 5 voting will favour Finland over many others.
    All things considered its a good draw.Estonia though will wish they had Finland.The Baltics are up against it that’s for sure with that draw.Sandra Nurmsala could be key now for Estonia (if her songs good enough).

    • I’ll admit that they’ve come out quite well with the draw of the big 5 + 1. Ideally they’d have swapped Italy for Denmark, but two out of three is a result.

  4. Really don’t think we can say definitively which semi is harder as only three out of 37 songs have been chosen. It’s not like football. Each country is only as good as its last song.

    Although there’s no song in UMK with a chance of winning Eurovision, so it’s a moot point. Still – divided from Estonia and Sweden four years running is pretty damn unlucky.

  5. We’ve never had more than 5 countries qualify from a first half of a semi. I’d say if it’s ever going to happen, it’ll be this year, with 5 ex-USSR countries in first half of first semi, alongside Sweden and Iceland!

  6. Oh, and even Hungary (Hungarian, along with Estonian, is a Finno-Ugric language) are in the first semi.

    • I think Hungary will struggle as they’ve been separated from a lot of their friends, ex-USSR likely to take 6 (or even 7) of the places, and having heard all of the songs don’t think there’s anything as strong as their three previous ones.

  7. Have to agree with most of what durham wrote, semi one looks very strong,latvia san marino etc are really looking buried in that semi, semi 2 looks a lot more open. agree again that greece and romania look the standouts.
    Im not going to get into it too much at this stage though we need to hear the songs first.

  8. Agreed we don’t have the songs yet but last year proved under the new system blocks can only get so many through and/or into the top 10 in the final.The weaker ex soviets are very exposed in semi 1 and western televote appeal might be what counts.

    Agree with Ben its a nasty draw for Albania and Hungary.

    However I also think Herciana is outstanding.The Albania song is jury bait and I fully expect when finished the song will be one of the 10 best this year.Bens points on their friends not being here this year or they are in semi2 though are very very valid.
    I was going to back Albania heavily for top 10 probably after all songs released but have to admit the draw and lack off Balkan allies turning up is a big concern.
    I will have to decide if I wait or take a big risk.

    If Greece or Romania have a good song though fill your boots for top 3 in semi,their support is far superior to anything else in semi2.

  9. I dont know where to comment, this is the first one that comes up with San Marino.

    Well, there is a snipper of Queen Valentina’s third try at Eurovision: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TLSu0tUQ3BQ

    It sounds like it’s about to get going at 30 seconds and then it’s cut short. The first 30 seconds doesnt sound bad, but I’m afraid she is just destined to fail in making the final :/

  10. Here is my pre-rehearsal, pre-running order (not even considering halves), qualifiers prediction for each semi final.
    ++ means I think it’s definitely through.
    + means I think it might qualify.
    – – means I think it’s definitely out.

    SF1:
    ++ Sweden
    ++ Azerbajian
    ++ Armenia
    ++ Estonia
    ++ Belgium
    ++ Hungary
    ++ Ukraine
    + Iceland
    + Russia
    + Moldova
    + Latvia
    + San Marino
    – – Montenegro
    – – Portugal

    SF2:
    ++ Norway
    ++ Malta
    ++ Finland
    ++ Romania
    ++ Austria
    + Israel
    + Lithuania
    + Poland
    + Macedonia
    + Ireland
    + Greece
    + Switzerland
    – – Belarus
    – – Slovenia
    – – Georgia

    I’m sure some of you will disagree, but I guess we should start discussing this it before the running order comes along to screw up our natural perceptions? 🙂

    • You missed out Albania Ben from semi 1,i think Herci qualifies from a high jury score but staging is critical for her.Shes the best vocalist at ESC this year,opera trained and the staging needs to highlight that fact.The song has a very interesting melody and her injecting the full emotion and power into it is key.She has to get the juries to reward her.
      Belgium im not convinced on yet.I understand the vocal is superb etc but if hes stuck between Hungary and Ukraine he will be hugely exposed as dated and cliche.Juries have a big affect this year though in the semis with smaller fields so im wary to lay him but will consider it at 1.3 or below.

      Semi 2 is fascinating.I think the darkhorse to qualify here is Slovenia.They have a great problem in a lack of friends and this year is even worse.Tinkara Kovač is a very experienced artist though.Shes an expert flute player and she might do a Maja Keuc and qualify.
      She has a very decent if boring middle of the road song that should pick up decent jury scores.
      Rumours the stage is going to be big in Copenhagen and that will suit the bands set up.The draw is key though i think for that 2nd half of semi 2.
      First half will depend where they put Poland.The producers will want to start the show with them or end the first half id expect.With a decent draw and running order i think Poland have an outside chance of winning the semi.They could also bomb.Depends on how much they tone down the sexual and push up the ethnic.

      Im leaning this year more and more to higher priced value plays expecting most/many to miss but in the hope some land.

      • I think Hersi has a decent shot at qualifying, Durham, but I’ve put her in the maybes because it’s not a sure thing for me. She’s a good singer, but the song is a bit on the limp side and there are more accessible songs.

        Slovenia aren’t doing it for me. I get that you think highly of Tinkara as an artist, and I like the whimsical arrangement and the English lyrics are good, but they won’t matter too much to most people. The staging is a mess and the song, while somewhat catchy, is just not good enough.

        As for Poland, they’re stuck between a rock and a hard place. Remember the juries murdered Elitsa and Stoyan last year with the most ethnic Slavic piece of music to have graced the stage since their re-introduction. I can’t see them opening the semi – or winning it – at all. Silly as it sounds, I honestly believe a little bit of sexual suggestion will do it some favours. What they need to push up is the commercial relevance and a solid vocal performance, that’s what going to get them to the final. I’m willing to bet there will be a few blokes on the jury panel in some countries who will vote with their willy.

        • Oops! I thought you meant I should put her in the certain qualifiers… yes I did completely miss her out. Shame I can’t edit my own comments. Albania gets a + for me, so a maybe.

        • Have to agree on Slovenias staging Ben,its terrible.It needs to be much more authentic and tight.The guitar players seem to be doing a Hugh Grant from the finale of About a Boy.I do rate Tinkara highly though and keeping an eye on her rehearsals.
          I think Poland is different league to Elitsa and Stoyan last year.I also think My Słowianie is capable of getting a lot of televote support.Remember the UK,Germany and Italy all vote in this semi and all three have huge amounts of Polish diaspora now.It needs to be back to Polish though or mixed as the English version cramps the chorus far too much.
          Semi 2 could prove very tight from top to bottom.

          • I wasn’t comparing My Slowanie to Samo Shampioni as songs – I was just using it to pick up on your suggestion that they should push the ethnic aspect of it. That’s what Elitsa and Stoyan did and the juries put them at the bottom.

            As for language, ESCKaz said via Twitter that Donatan has confirmed it will be performed in two-thirds Polish.

      • Oh bollocks, I missed out the Netherlands as well. Gav, would you mind deleting all of this rubbish please?

  11. Rather strong historical evidence point out that only 5 songs can qualify from the first half of the semi. With Armenia, Azerbaijan, Estonia, Sweden, Albania, Russia (among with the weird possibility of Iceland due to their political message) I think it’s likely we will have a shock nq. If I can lay Sweden for 1.05 I will believe that Sanna could miss out.

  12. Semi 1 Running Order:

    1.Armenia

    2.Latvia

    3.Estonia

    4.Sweden

    5.Iceland

    6.Albania

    7.Russia

    8.Azerbaijan

    9.Ukraine

    10.Belgium

    11.Moldova

    12.San Marino

    13.Portugal

    14.The Netherlands

    15.Montenegro

    16.Hungary

  13. Semi Final 2 Running Order:

    1.Malta

    2.Israel

    3.Norway

    4.Georgia

    5.Poland

    6.Austria

    7.Lithuania

    8.Finland

    9.Ireland

    10.Belarus

    11.F.Y.R. Macedonia

    12.Switzerland

    13. Greece

    14.Slovenia

    15.Romania

  14. Producers.Lets put the fan favourites in slots 1 and 16 in semi 1.No doubt they figure Armenia is through without help.They have put the Baltics and the Scandi entries all together and the eastern block altogether.Interesting.
    Its a bad draw for Sweden.Inbetween two upbeat songs then followed by Herci who has better vocals than Sanna and likely to look more emotional.
    The same goes for Russia.Terrible draw.The twins are sat between the best two vocalists in the semi in Herci and Dilara and then the uptempo Ukraine.Russia in trouble here.

    Semi 2 im very happy with Polands draw.They will really stand out though Austria taking the limelight is a worry.Pleased for Slovenia as well.Following Greece is a good draw for her.

    • don’t think Sweden are in any danger of being outshone by Iceland DB

      • Not on quality no,but its far from perfect being between two upbeats then the top drawer vocals of Herci and Dilara following.At 1.07-1.12 the value is on the lay side i reckon.Russia has the worst of it though.The twins between two quality vocalists is the last place they wanted to be.If the juries want an excuse to mark them down they now have one.

  15. bwin have a winners market for sf1 (don’t know why not sf2 also?). i took Hungary @8.0 (now 6.0). would have preferred an ew bet but thought it was value given the draw.

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