The first semi-final of the Eurovision Song Contest 2022 is just a few hours away, and so it’s time for us in the escgo! team to predict the first ten qualifiers for the grand final on Saturday.
You can see the choices of Shi, Martin and Felix in the table below – followed by a brief summary of their views!
Shi: Once again, it’s that time of year where I manage to narrow my guess down to 11, end up forced to pick one to leave out, and then get that one plus two more wrong. What is more unique about this guess is it’s probably the most blatant hybrid of prediction and preference that I’ve ever done, but you know what? If I’m not sure, I might as well hope for the best. In the battle for the worst dressers, I picked Moldova over Latvia because one of those countries actually has a song. Being unable to decide which atmospheric song has more chance to make it, I just picked all three – Netherlands, Iceland and Portugal. And since Austria managed to surprise me with not having the tackiest staging in the history of EDM at ESC, I surprised myself by including this in the list, too.
Shi’s favourites: My absolute favorite songs in this semi – Netherlands and Iceland – are also in my absolute favorite top 5 songs of the season, so both definitely fall into my “I will have a very strong emotional reaction to this, no matter what happens.” Other than that, my guilty pleasure of the year is also here, and no, it’s not Croatia, but Austria who I’ve had very little expectations of, initially – and despite my choice above I’m still expecting the worst.
Martin: Albania’s staging has prompted a lot of words to be written and I was tempted to write it off as a hot mess NQ, but they’ve got into the habit of qualifying and finishing about 22nd in the final, and that’s what I see Ronela doing despite all the drama. I’m concerned about the simplicity of the Dutch staging, but I’m still counting on S10 making it to the final on song quality alone. (A “shock” non-qualification wouldn’t shock me, though.) Elsewhere, I still can’t quite make an argument for all of Latvia, Ukraine and Moldova qualifying – is there room for so much colour? – and similarly, I feel like there’s only so many introspective female ballads Europe can take in a single sitting. That’s why Iceland don’t quite make the cut for me. Perhaps most surprisingly to myself: like Shi, I’m now putting Austria in a qualifier slot, but we’ll all be crossing our fingers for those vocals to sit right…
Martin’s favourites: My personal favourites in this semi are the Netherlands, Greece and… maybe Iceland, actually. As such, I hope Shi is right about the sisters making it through to the final, even if I haven’t included them in my qualification list.
Felix: For various reasons, I couldn’t obsess about Eurovision in the past week as much as I wanted to, so I only got a very vague and incomplete impression from the rehearsals. I usually do my predictions in a very pseudo-scientific manner – this year, you’ll just get what my gut feeling says, and this has my favourite out (Iceland), and my least favourite in (Norway). Also Albania, which I can’t get behind this year, should be a safe qualifier. Annoying results always happen, and that’s why many fans will be annoyed about Latvia’s qualification tonight. Ukraine is probably the clear winner, poor Slovenia last. Lithuania and Denmark could both be borderline, but I fear it will be Liu-thiania which will be forgotten by the end of the line-up. Austria screams NQ, but might surprise. Hard to predict as always, but semi-final 2 will be a tougher one.
Felix’s favourites: My favourite of the whole year is on tonight, and it’s Iceland. It would be a very nice surprise if this one makes the final. I’ll also cheer for Lithuania, Netherlands and Portugal.
Who do you agree with and what do you think will be the big shocks tonight? Let us know in the comments!