How high are every country’s chances of qualifying, based on statistics?

Yesterday morning, the EBU has published the full running order of both semi finals of the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest. That means that it’s the time of the year when we sit down and do our statistics and check out what are every country’s chances of qualifying if you put aside all the songs, and concentrate on maths only. We’ve taken into account the past six years, as those are the ones which had the same voting system as this year (well, almost – 50% televoting + 50% jury voting). So here we go…

Semi Final 1

01. Finland – Sandhja – Sing It Away
Semi 1 position 01 qualification rate: 33%
Finland’s qualification rate: 50%

If they are not drawn in the middle (running orders 8-10), they usually got the slot No. 5 (in 2010, 2013 and 2015). This is the first time in six years that Finland is opening the semi final. Three out of their six entries have qualified for the Final, while only two openers of semi 1 made it in the past six years – Sunstroke Project & Olia Tira for Moldova in 2010, and Aram MP3 for Armenia in 2014. In average only one of the show openers qualifies. If this repeats this year, it will be either Finland, or Latvia.

02. Greece – Argo – Utopian Land
Semi 1 position 02 qualification rate: 67%
Greece’s qualification rate: 100%

Now Greece is one of those countries with a 100% qualification record. Also, the myth of the “position No. 2” is long lost, as 7 out of 12 songs in the past six years have qualified from this position (4/6 in semi 1). This is going to be the earliest draw for Greece in the past six years. In 2012, Eleftheria Eleftheriou qualified from the position No. 3, finishing in 4th place. Statistically, the chances of Greece qualifying are high.

03. Moldova – Lidia Isac – Falling Stars
Semi 1 position 03 qualification rate: 33%
Moldova’s qualification rate: 67%

Moldova has qualified four times out of six, but their two non-qualifications came in the last two years. Apart from Eleftheria who we already mentioned, only Loic Nottet managed to qualify from the position 03 in the first semi final. We are giving slightly lower chances than average of Moldova qualifying this year.

04. Hungary – Freddie – Pioneer
Semi 1 position 04 qualification rate: 17%
Hungary’s qualification rate: 100%

Position 04 proved to be the worst running order position in the first semi final, as the only qualifier in the last six years from this position in semi 1 was Sweden in 2014 with Sanna Nielsen. Hungary has a 100% qualification rate , but at the same time – they took part in the second half of their semi finals. This is the earliest draw for Hungary since the semi finals have been introduced, however due to the perfect qualification rate, we think Freddie will join Sanna Nielsen in the list of qualifiers from this position, as we are giving him slightly higher than average chances.

05. Croatia – Nina Kraljic – Lighthouse
Semi 1 position 05 qualification rate: 50%
Croatia’s qualification rate: 0%

In the four occasions Croatia took part in the last six years, they never managed to qualify. Their best result was 12th in the semi final in Baku. Three songs have qualified from position 05 in the past six years – Rona Nishliu in 2012, Emmelie de Forest in 2013 who won the Contest, and Pollaponk in 2014. Last year none of the two songs in the 5th running order position managed to make it to the Finals, and based on these statistics, Nina’s qualification chances are low.

06. The Netherlands – Douwe Bob – Slow Down
Semi 1 position 06 qualification rate: 67%
The Netherlands’ qualification rate: 33%

Two out of six qualifications (Anouk, and The Common Linnets) give the Netherlands a 33% qualification rate. The only two songs in semi 1 which failed to qualify from this position are Aisha for Latvia in 2010 and Hersi for Albania in 2014 – both of them finishing last in their semi finals. Also, this is the first time since 2010 that a solo male artist is singing under this running order position in semi 1. We give high chances of qualifying to Douwe Bob based on the statistics.

07. Armenia – Iveta Mukuchyan – LoveWave
Semi 1 position 07 qualification rate: 83%
Armenia’s qualification rate: 80%

The only time Armenia missed out on qualifying was in 2011 with Emmy. Running order position 07 in the first semi final is the second best when it comes to the qualifiers in the past six years. The only ones who failed to make it from this position were Sinplus in 2012. Based on the numbers, we are almost sure that Iveta’s “LoveWave” will hit us in the Final as well.

08. San Marino – Serhat – I Didn’t Know
Semi 1 position 08 qualification rate: 67%
San Marino’s qualification rate: 20%

As we all know very well, Valentina Monetta managed to bring San Marino to the Eurovision final in 2014, in her third and (so far) final attempt. The only acts who failed to qualify from this running order position in semi 1 are Iris for Belgium in 2012 and Daniel Kajmakoski for Macedonia in 2014. If we put all the numbers together, San Marino’s chances of qualification are in the middle.

09. Russia – Sergey Lazarev – You Are The Only One
Semi 1 position 09 qualification rate: 50%
Russia’s qualification rate: 100%

Russia is a country which never missed the Eurovision Final since the introduction of the semi finals. In 2010-2012, only Eldrine managed to qualify from this position (including both semis), while in the 2013-2015 period only Who See and Can-Linn feat. Kasey Smith failed. Due to the recent success with this running order number, and Russia’s 100% qualification rate, Sergey has nothing to worry about.

10. Czech Republic – Gabriela Guncikova – I Stand
Semi 1 position 10 qualification rate: 67%
Czech Republic’s qualification rate: 0%

In their four attempts (one in the last six years), the Czech Republic never qualified for the Grand Final. After a 5 year break, at their come-back last year, they managed to score their best result – 13th in the semi final with 33 points (which is 23 points more than their first three entries received). The qualification rate of this running order position in semi 1 is pretty high, as Izabo and Axel Hirsoux were the only ones who failed in the past six years. Based on all of this, we still think that Gabriela’s chances are lower than average.

11. Cyprus – Minus One – Alter Ego
Semi 1 position 11 qualification rate: 17%
Cyprus’ qualification rate: 60%

In their past five attempts, one year Cyprus qualified, the following one didn’t. They made it with Jon Lilygreen in 2010, failed with Christos Mylordos in 2011, made it again with Ivi Adamou in 2012, then failed with Despina Olympiou in 2013. After a year’s break and their return in 2015, they made it with John Karayiannis. If we continue this trend, it would mean that Minus One are in serious trouble. Also, the qualification rate of this running order position is extremely low, as only Alyona Lanskaya managed to qualify from this position back in 2013. Even though based on the song they are one of the fan favorites and our non-Eurovision fans reviewers loved the Cypriot song, based on the numbers these guys will struggle to qualify.

12. Austria – Zoe – Loin d’ici
Semi 1 position 12 qualification rate: 83%
Austria’s qualification rate: 50%

In the years they took part and needed to qualify for the Final, the Austrians made it twice out of four tries (in 2011 with Nadine Beiler and in 2014 with Conchita Wurst). On the other hand, the only song that failed to qualify for the Grand Final from this position was Senit back in 2011 for San Marino. We think Zoe will have slightly higher than average chances to qualify for the Final.

13. Estonia – Juri Pootsmann – Play
Semi 1 position 13 qualification rate: 50%
Estonia’s qualification rate: 67%

The two times Estonia missed the Final in the past six years was in 2010 with Malcolm Linkoln and in 2014 with Tanja. In both of these occasions, Estonia’s entrants performed third in semi 1. In the past two years number 13 in semi 1 was unlucky for Anti Social Media and for Suzy. Also, the only times Estonia failed to qualify was when they performed before and/or after a Scandinavian country, or one that they border. Performing after Austria has already brought them luck in 2013, and we think that chances are higher than average for this to happen again.

14. Azerbaijan – Samra – Miracle
Semi 1 position 14 qualification rate: 83%
Azerbaijan’s qualification rate: 100%

Azerbaijan has almost the perfect numbers to keep their 100% qualification record. From position number 14 the only song that failed to qualify from semi 1 in the past six years was Despina Olympiou in 2013 for Cyprus. Azerbaijan is also the fifth-to-last entry to be performed, and none of the fifth-to-last entries from semi 1 have failed to qualify. Based on these facts, it will be a miracle if Azerbaijan fails to qualify.

15. Montenegro – Highway – The Real Thing
Semi 1 position 15 qualification rate: 83%
Montenegro’s qualification rate: 50%

Position number 15 also has a great qualification rate, as only Gjoko Tanevski from Macedonia failed to qualify from this position in semi 1 back in 2010. All entries from 2011-2015 performing in this slot have qualified for the Final. Also, Montenegro has sung under this slot in 2014, which was also their first ever qualification for the Grand Final with Sergej Cetkovic. Looking at the fourth-to-last entries in semi 1 in the past two years, we find Suzy from Portugal and Anti Social Media from Denmark – both of which failed to qualify. Based on all of this, we think Highway’s chances are 50-50.

16. Iceland – Greta Salome – Hear Them Calling
Semi 1 position 16 qualification rate: 50%
Qualification rate of the third-last song in semi 1: 50%
Iceland’s qualification rate: 83%

16 is the last running order position that we had in every single year in semi 1 in the past six years. In the last three years, this running order position was closing the show. Overall, three of the songs in this position failed to qualify – Homens da Luta in 2011, Trackshittaz in 2012, and Moje 3 in 2013. In the past two years both songs from this position qualified. Looking at the third-to-last entries, once again the ones in the last two years qualified – Elhaida Dani and The Common Linnets. The only time Iceland failed to qualify was last year in Vienna with Maria Olafs. Based on this, we think Greta’s chances of qualification are pretty high.

17. Bosnia & Herzegovina – Deen, Dalal feat. Ana Rucner & Jala – Ljubav je
Semi 1 position 17 qualification rate: 100%
Qualification rate of the second-last song in semi 1: 100%
Bosnia & Herzegovina’s qualification rate: 100%

Since the introduction of semi finals, Bosnia & Herzegovina never had any troubles qualifying. Even though they have a 100% record, they withdrew in 2013, and are coming back this year. In the case of this running order position, we have three times 100% – Bosnia & Herzegovina’s qualification record, then every in the past six years that was performed 17th in semi 1 has qualified, and it is the same case if we look at the second-to-last entries that were performed in the past six years. Based on statistics, it is not even a question whether Deen, Dalal, Ana and Jala will qualify.

18. Malta – Ira Losco – Walk on Water
Semi 1 position 18 qualification rate: 100%
Qualification rate of the last song in semi 1: 83%
Malta’s qualification rate: 50%

This is the first time that Malta is closing the semi final. They qualified three times in the past six years – in 2012 with Kurt Calleja, in 2013 with Gianluca, and in 2014 with Firelight. In both occasions there was a number 18 in semi 1, the artists performing under this slot have qualified – Ell & Nikki in 2011 and Jedward in 2012. If we look at the qualification record of the songs that performed last in semi 1, the only one that failed to qualify was Serbia in 2013 with Moje 3. Based on all of this, we think Ira Losco’s chances at qualifying are higher than average.

Putting all of these numbers together, and purely based on the statistics, the top 10 would be: Bosnia & Herzegovina, Azerbaijan, Russia, Greece, Malta, Iceland, The Netherlands, Hungary, Armenia and Estonia.

Semi Final 2

01. Latvia – Justs – Heartbeat
Semi 2 position 01 qualification rate: 67%
Latvia’s qualification rate: 17%

The only Latvian act in the past six years that managed to qualify is Aminata. Two of the other five finished last in their semi finals (Aisha and PeR), while another two finished third last (Musiqq and Anmary). Also, Latvia has had a chance to open the semi final in 2013 (PeR – last). It’s not looking good for Latvia based on their own numbers, eh? Ok… Looking at the show openers of the second semi, we find that, apart from the already mentioned twice PeR, it was only InCulto who failed to qualify in 2010 – Latvia’s neighbours. The openers of the second semi in the past two years have both qualified, so not everything is black. Even though the bookmakers and the fans predict Justs to sail through to the Final (and we agree – he should), the statistics say his chances are low.

02. Poland – Michal Szpak – Color Of Your Life
Semi 2 position 02 qualification rate: 50%
Poland’s qualification rate: 50%

In the first two years of the period 2010-2015, and before their two-year break, Poland failed to qualify. Cleo & Donatan brought Poland back to the Final in 2014 and Monika Kuszynska did the same last year. In the past three years, none of the songs performing in semi 2 under the position 02 managed to qualify for the Final – Valentina Monetta with “Crisalide” in 2013, Mei Finegold in 2014, and Molly Sterling last year. Putting all of this together, we think Michal’s chances overall are average.

03. Switzerland – Rykka – The Last Of Our Kind
Semi 2 position 03 qualification rate: 33%
Switzerland’s qualification rate: 33%

Switzerland qualified twice in the past six years – in 2011 with Anna Rossinelli, and in 2014 with Sebalter. At the same time, only two songs performing in semi 2 under the 03rd position qualified – Harel Skaat in 2010 for Israel, and Carl Espen in 2014 for Norway. Even though the last two time they sent a Canadian singer to Eurovision they ended up in the top three (way back in 1988 and 1993), the more recent statistics say that Switzerland’s chances this year are lower than average.

04. Israel – Hovi Star – Made of Stars
Semi 2 position 04 qualification rate: 67%
Israel’s qualification rate: 33%

Position 04 in the second semi proved to be a rather good one – the only ones it didn’t work for in the past six years were The Shin & Mariko in 2014 and Witloof Bay in 2011. The closest running order draw to 04 Israel got in 2010, when Harel Skaat managed to qualify (he was third in the running order). The only other time Israel qualified in the past six years was last year with Nadav Guedj. Based on this, Israel’s chances of qualification are average.

05. Belarus – Ivan – Help You Fly
Semi 2 position 05 qualification rate: 33%
Belarus’ qualification rate: 50%

Belarus has qualified three times in the past six years – and all of the three times, the Contest was held in Scandinavia – in 2010 in Oslo with 3+2, in 2013 in Malmo with Alyona Lanskaya, and in 2014 in Copenhagen with Teo. If we take this into consideration, Ivan should have no problems at qualifying! However, in 2012 this running order position brought no luck to Litesound, as they finished third-last in their semi final. Also, in the past six years, only two songs qualified from position 05 in semi 2 – Donatan & Cleo, and Krista Siegfrids (again, both Scandi-hosted Contests). Taking all of this into account, we think Ivan’s chances are still average.

06. Serbia – Sanja Vucic – Goodbye (Shelter)
Semi 2 position 06 qualification rate: 67%
Serbia’s qualification rate: 80%

In the past six years, Serbia took part five times, and only missed the Final once (in 2013 with Moje 3). The only time Serbia missed the final was also when they were not in the same semi final as Macedonia (which is again not the case this year). In 2011, Serbia has position 06 in the first semi final, and Nina managed to qualify for the Grand Final. The only ones that failed from this position in semi 2 were Anna Bergendahl from Sweden in 2010 and Filipa Sousa from Portugal in 2012. We also had a Eurovision winner performing sixth in semi 2 – Conchita Wurst. Based on all of this, we think that Serbia’s chances at qualification this year are higher than average.

07. Ireland – Nicky Byrne – Sunlight
Semi 2 position 07 qualification rate: 50%
Ireland’s qualification rate: 67%

This running order position in semi final 2 brought us three qualifiers – Safura in 2010, Zdob si Zdub in 2011, and Zlata Ognevich in 2013. In the past two years, Vilija and Leonor Andrade failed to qualify. On the other hand, Ireland has four qualifications in the six participations – the two times they failed were actually in the last two years – in 2014 with Can-Linn and Kasey Smith, and last year with Molly Sterling. Even though the numbers in the past six years are more positive, the ones from the last two are rather negative. This is why we think Nicky only has average chances at qualifying.

08. Macedonia – Kaliopi – Dona
Semi 2 position 08 qualification rate: 67%
Macedonia’s qualification rate: 17%

The only time Macedonia qualified for the Grand Final in the past six years, was the time when Kaliopi represented her country the first time – in 2012. Also, it was only Marta & Vaclav last year, and Sofi Marinova in 2012 who failed to qualify for the Final with this running order position. Macedonia was performing 8th last year as well in semi 1 with Daniel Kajmakoski, who failed to qualify for the final. This semi is full of countries which statistically have average chances at qualification, and Macedonia is also one of those.

09. Lithuania – Donny Montell – I’ve Been Waiting For This Night
Semi 2 position 09 qualification rate: 33%
Lithuania’s qualification rate: 67%

When it comes to the starting position 09 in semi 2, only two songs qualified in the last six years – Koza Mostra in 2013 for Greece and Nadav Guedj last year for Israel. Looking at Lithuanian entries, it was only InCulto in 2010 and Vilija in 2014 who failed to qualify for the Final. Donny Montell represented Lithuania in 2012, but he was the last one to perform. This year we think his chances are – you’re guessing – average.

10. Australia – Dami Im – Sound of Silence
Semi 2 position 10 qualification rate: 50%
Australia’s qualification rate: N/A

Considering that this is the second year of Australia entering Eurovision, and that last year they were directly in the Final – this is the first time they are entering a semi final. The position number 10 in semi 2 where Dami Im will perform brought luck to three out of six entrants in the past – Paula Seling & Ovi in 2010, Teo in 2014 and Aminata in 2015. Due to the good results in the past two years, Australia has slightly higher than average chances at qualification.

11. Slovenia – ManuElla – Blue And Red
Semi 2 position 11 qualification rate: 50%
Slovenia’s qualification rate: 50%

Three Slovenian entrants in the past six years have qualified – both entrants in the last two years (Tinkara Kovac and Maraaya), and Maja Keuc in 2011. Slovenia has already performed in slot 11 in the second semi back in 2010, when Ansambel Rok Zlindre & Kalamari collected 6 points and finished second-last in their semi. Dorians in 2013 and Elnur Huseynov last year have qualified for the Grand Final in this running order position, as well as Loreen in 2012 who ended up winning the Contest. Running order position 11 is overall one of the worst ones that an artist can get, as only four out of 12 acts that had this running order number qualified. Thus we think that Slovenia has slightly lower than average chances at qualification this year.

12. Romania – Ovidiu Anton – Moment of Silence
Semi 2 position 12 qualification rate: 50%
Romania’s qualification rate: 100%

Romania is one of those few countries which never failed to qualify for the Grand Final. A song in Romanian (Aliona Moon representing Moldova in 2013) has qualified from this running order position, but in semi 1. In semi 2, 3 acts out of 6 qualified in the past years – Niamh Kavanagh in 2010, ByeAlex in 2013, and Sebalter in 2014. Even though the running order position is not the best one, Romania’s perfect qualification record gives them higher chances at qualifying once again!

13. Bulgaria – Poli Genova – If Love Was A Crime
Semi 2 position 13 qualification rate: 83%
Bulgaria’s qualification rate: 0%

Running order number 13 is the second best you can get if you are in semi final 2. Still, the only time a song from this running order position failed to qualify was when that song was the one from Bulgaria – 2010, Miro. When Poli represented Bulgaria in 2011, she was also in the second semi final with 19 songs competing (same as this year), and she performed 10th. Unfortunately, Bulgaria failed to qualify in all four of their participations in the past six years. Will Poli finally bring back Bulgaria to the Final? Statistics say her chances are only average.

14. Denmark – Lighthouse X – Soldiers Of Love
Semi 2 position 14 qualification rate: 67%
Denmark’s qualification rate: 80%

In the past six years, Denmark failed to qualify for the Final only once – that was last year in Vienna, with Anti Social Media. A fun/weird fact (take it as you like) is that since 2013, Denmark was surrounded by one ex-Soviet country, and one Balkan country in the semi finals. When we take a look at the running order number 14 in semi 2, the only two acts that failed to qualify from this position were Adrian & Bledar in 2013, as well as Melanie Rene last year. Taking all of that into account, Denmark has higher than average chances at qualifying for the Final this year.

15. Ukraine – Jamala – 1944
Semi 2 position 15 qualification rate: 67%
Ukraine’s qualification rate: 100%

In their five participations in the past six years, Ukraine has made it to the Final every single time, whether they were early or late in the draw. In the semi final 2 in 2014, song number 15 was the one that closed the show. When looking at the songs that failed to qualify from this position in semi 2, we only find Feminnem’s “Lako je sve” and Max Jason Mai’s “Don’t Close Your Eyes”. All the ones in the past three years have qualified. Thus, the statistics say that Ukraine’s chances at qualifying are very high.

16. Norway – Agnete – Icebreaker
Semi 2 position 16 qualification rate: 60%
Norway’s qualification rate: 80%

As we previously mentioned, there was no song 16 in semi 2 in 2014. Thus out of the five acts from 2010-2015, only three of them managed to qualify for the Grand Final from semi 2 under this running order number – Sofia Nizharadze in 2010 (second-to-last entry), Maraaya last year (second-to-last entry), as well as Norway’s Tooji in 2012 (third-to-last entry). The only time Norway failed to qualify was in 2011 with Stella Mwangi. In the last three years, only one of the fourth-to-last entries qualified – Sebalter from Switzerland. Still, the statistics say that Norway’s chances at qualifying are higher than average.

17. Nika Kocharov & Young Georgian Lolitaz – Midnight Gold
Semi 2 position 17 qualification rate: 80%
Qualification rate of the third-last song in semi 2: 67%
Georgia’s qualification rate: 67%

There was the song number 17 in semi 2 in five out of the past six years, but in three of those five it was the last song performed. In all three occasions it was the closing song of the show, the act qualified. The only act that failed was Musiqq from Latvia in 2011. Looking at the third-to-last songs in the second semi finals over the past six years, two of them failed to qualify – Musiqq (once again), and Feminnem in 2010. On the other hand, Georgia also missed out from the Grand Final twice in the past six years – in 2012 with Anri Jokhadze, and in 2014 with The Shin & Mariko. Nodi & Sofi who represented Georgia in 2013 were the third last entry (same as Nika and Lolitaz), and they just scraped through to the Finals in Malmo. Even though the bookmakers and the fans give this song hardly any chances, based on statistics only the guys have a higher than average chance to qualify.

18. Albania – Eneda Tarifa – Fairytale
Semi 2 position 18 qualification rate: 100%
Qualification rate of the second-last song in semi 2: 83%
Albania’s qualification rate: 50%

We had songs 18 in semi 2 in two occasions in the past six years – in 2011 and 2012, and in both occasions those songs qualified. Due to this, we are taking a look at all the songs that were second-to-last to perform in the second semi, and only one failed in the past six years – Takasa for Switzerland in 2013. Albania on the other hand, had three qualifiers in their six tries. Elhaida Dani only qualified as 10th in her semi last year, while Hersi in 2014 and Adrian & Bledar in 2013 failed to qualify. The other two qualifiers for Albania were Rona Nishliu in 2012 and Juliana Pasha in 2010. Based on these numbers and on recent results, the statistics give an average chance for Albania to qualify.

19. Belgium – Laura Tesoro – What’s The Pressure
Semi 2 position 19 qualification rate: 100%
Qualification rate of the last song in semi 2: 100%

Belgium’s qualification rate: 50%

The only song performed under number 19 with the two semi system in the past six years was “Lipstick” by Jedward, and it qualified. Taking a look at the songs performed last in the second semi final, we find that every single one of them in the past six years have qualified. Perfect qualification conditions for any song! Belgium has only had a 50% success in the past six years, making it to the Final in 2010 with Tom Dice, in 2013 with Roberto Bellarosa, and last year with Loic Nottet. Overall, Belgium’s chances this year by performing last in semi 2 according to statistics are pretty high.

So once again, putting all of the songs aside and only taking a look at the statistics from the past six years, these would be the 10 qualifiers form semi final 2: Ukraine, Belgium, Romania, Serbia, Australia, Norway, Denmark, Georgia, Ireland, and Bulgaria.

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