Well, I say that. I actually ended up putting Netherlands top in my ESC Nation Message Board pre-rehearsals prediction, because I just couldn't see what else won. And I still feel like that now. At no point have I really felt that Arcade is a likely, or even really a deserving winner - but I don't see anything else winning either. And they can't all come 4th.
It felt quite easy to put the entries into blocks, and I actually have Netherlands and Australia above everything else, as I struggled to find entries to fill the Top 5. To be fair, I'm always like this - in the last few years I've always struggled to visualise these songs doing *well*. Which usually means there's some kind of surprise, like Sunstroke Project or Michael Schulte. If I were to call a surprise Top 5, it would perhaps be Slovenia or Norway. It might even be Spain, though I really don't think so.
So, without further ado...
3. Iceland - I feel like this is the kind of thing that the build-up and the hype will really help; juries in particular really tend to follow hype, so I'm expecting that to make up for the underwhelming live performance.
5. Azerbaijan - to be honest, I was underwhelmed by this in the semi, after all the raves from the press centre, but I guess I'm probably missing something there, as I was pretty alone in that opinion. It also doesn't help that I really dislike the song!
7. Russia - it never felt like a winner or even a Top 3 entry from the moment it came out, and I wish I'd had the courage in my convictions to bet on it earlier.
8. Slovenia - genuinely could come anywhere.
9. Malta - a little surprised they put it on first.
11. Czech Republic - I'm more surprised they put this on so closely after Malta. They're visually similar, and I'm now considering getting out of my original Top 10 bet that I put on weeks ago.
12. France - which I guess makes them Top Big Five by default.
16. North Macedonia
19. Cyprus - hugely underwhelmed by Tamta and everything about this in the semi-final, it wouldn't have shocked me if it had failed to qualify.
22. San Marino
24. Germany - 'too obvious to be last' is usually rubbish, but I'm hoping the S?sters might get a little bit of jury love to push them above a couple of other entries.
25. United Kingdom