Eurovision 2021 winner: Iceland set to be victorious after gaining ‘sympathy vote’

Eurovision: James Newman performs UK entry in final

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Iceland’s entry Daði og Gagnamagnið were unable to perform during the live Eurovision Song Contest 2021 final after one member of the band tested positive for COVID-19 earlier in the week. As a result, a video of the group performing at the dress rehearsal was broadcast. Host Graham Norton noted the band could be lucky on the leaderboard but suggested they would get sympathy votes.

Daði og Gagnamagnið were the favourites to win the Eurovision Song Contest in 2020 but due to the coronavirus pandemic were unable to perform.

Fans were hoping to see them perform live in 2021 but suffered a set back when one member of the band tested positive for coronavirus.

After they performed 10 Years, a song dedicated to Daði Freyr’s wife, Graham noted they had a good chance of winning.

“That’s my favourite bit that they built that pause in at the end,” Graham noted as the Icelandic performance came to an end.

“Pure Eurovision! Oh there’s James Newman cheering them on,” the host added getting distracted.

Turning his attention back to the group, Graham told viewers: “That was his wife in the glasses on the end on the keyboard.

“I think they will do well. I think there might be a sympathy vote as well. I don’t know.”

Although there was no competition in Rotterdam last year, the group’s 2020 entry Think About Things became a hugely infectious dance sensation.

The track has been streamed over seventy million times on Spotify, and it blessed the official Top 40 charts of the United Kingdom, Sweden and Ireland (where it placed in the Top 3, as it did in Daði’s native Iceland).

Daði’s wife and inspiration for 10 Years, Árný Fjóla, is one of the members of Gagnamagnið.

His sister, Sigrún Birna Pétursdóttir, undertakes backing vocal duties and friends Hulda Kristín Kolbrúnardóttir, Stefán Hannesson and Jóhann Sigurður Jóhannsson complete the grooves and moves in the rest of the line-up.

Ahead of the Eurovision Song Contest Final, UK entry James Newman faced tough odds to avoid placing last.

He chalked up odds of 6/4 to finish last while he had odds of 100/1 to win the 2021 competition.

Alex Apati of Ladbrokes said: “Stranger things have happened, but the latest odds suggest James Newman has a near impossible task on his hands in Rotterdam tonight.”

Meanwhile, Italy remained the strong favourite to win with odds of 9/4 with France close behind at 11/4.

Represented by critically band Måneskin, the Italians had odds of 2/1 to be crowned champions putting them ahead of France (10/3) and former frontrunners Malta (5/1).

Elsewhere, the UK’s James Newman was 100/1 to cause an unlikely upset in Rotterdam and 6/4 to finish the night in last place.

Alex Apati of Ladbrokes said: “The Italians are the ones to beat in Rotterdam as far as the odds concerned, with France posing the most likely threat.”

Eurovision Song Contest is available to watch on BBC iPlayer now.

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