The UK’s long years of Eurovision pain – in numbers

Sam Ryder will goal to finish a dismal run of kind for the UK when he takes to the stage of the Eurovision Track Contest in Turin on Saturday 14 Could.

The UK has completed within the prime half of the competitors solely 3 times to this point this century: 2002 (when the nation was represented by Jessica Garlick), 2009 (Jade Ewen) and 2011 (Blue).

There is already a buzz surrounding Ryder and his music “Space Man”, with some bookmakers suggesting he may bag sufficient factors to return third or fourth.

This could be fairly the turnaround for a rustic that has turn out to be used to ending the competition close to the underside of the scoreboard – and typically in final place.

Since 2000 the UK has completed in one of many backside three positions on 10 separate events.

It has additionally come final a complete of 5 instances: in 2003 (Jemini), 2008 (Andy Abraham), 2010 (Josh Dubovie), 2019 (Michael Rice) and 2021 (James Newman).

Andy Abraham, who completed final when representing the UK within the 2008 Eurovision Track Contest (Katie Collins/PA)

(PA Archive)

This isn’t fairly as unhealthy as Finland, who for the reason that begin of the competition in 1956 has completed final within the last a report 9 instances.

However it’s typical of the UK’s faltering Eurovision efficiency in recent times, and is in sharp distinction to how the nation fared in earlier a long time.

From 1959 proper by way of to 1998, the UK completed within the backside half of the competitors on simply two events: 1978 and 1987.

UK Eurovision winners Bucks Fizz pictured in 1981 (PA)

(PA Archive)

It was throughout this time that the UK notched up its 5 Eurovision wins, in 1967 (Sandie Shaw), 1969 (Lulu), 1976 (Brotherhood Of Man), 1981 (Bucks Fizz) and 1997 (Katrina And The Waves).

This was additionally the interval when the UK got here second a complete of 15 instances – greater than every other nation in Eurovision historical past.

As this dazzling period fades additional into the previous, the purpose will quickly be reached the place extra years have elapsed for the reason that UK final received the competition (at the moment 25) than the time between the UK’s first win and most up-to-date victory (30 years – from 1967 to 1997).

(PA Graphics)

(PA Graphics)

If Sam Ryder manages to complete within the prime half of this 12 months’s competitors, he’ll a minimum of have ended the nation’s long term of poor outcomes since Blue managed a good eleventh place in 2011.

Avoiding one of many backside three locations would even be an enchancment on current years.

And if by some likelihood he wins the ultimate, not solely would this be the primary UK win in a technology, it might additionally imply the UK will get to host the competition subsequent 12 months – for a report ninth time.

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