Give us our douze points back! Why Malta is alone in the Eurovision

Malta doesn’t benefit from “Eurovision allies” in the distribution of top points, like many Southern and Eastern European countries do

Malta’s 12 points to countries like neighbouring Italy or former colonial master England in the Eurovision Song Contest are rarely paid back in kind, new research into the schmaltzy musical spectacular suggests. 

Research by online casino and gaming company Casumo suggests that Malta doesn’t benefit from “Eurovision allies” in the distribution of top points, like many Southern and Eastern European countries do.

Malta has received a ‘maximum points’ vote – this used to be 12 points but can now be anything between 12 and 24 points – 23 times, making it 27th out of the 52 countries that have participated in Eurovision over the years. This means that Malta has received an average of one ‘maximum points’ vote per final appearance. 

The records for every final between 1956 and 2018, reveal which countries are Malta’s biggest Eurovision favourites and its biggest supporters, by ranking countries by the number of times they received ‘maximum points’ votes from other countries, and how many times they gave them to others. 


Croatia likes Malta best 

Of the 23 times Malta has been placed first by another Eurovision country, most times can be attributed to Croatia and Bosnia & Herzegovina. Malta has received more ‘maximum points’ votes from Croatia than any other country.

3 times: Bosnia & Herzegovina, Croatia 
2 times: Denmark, Ireland, Portugal, Slovenia, Sweden, United Kingdom 
1 time: Luxembourg, Norway, Russia, Spain, Turkey

18 countries have received one or more ‘maximum points’ votes from Malta over the years. Malta’s biggest favourite is Italy, followed by, perhaps surprisingly (cough...) Azerbaijan.

5 times: Italy 
4 times: Azerbaijan, Cyprus 
3 times: Ireland 
2 times: Iceland, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom 
1 time: Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Estonia, Greece, Israel, Netherlands, Russia, Slovakia, Switzerland

Malta’s favourite only rarely wins

Malta has awarded its ‘maximum points’ vote only seven times to a country that went on to win the contest. The UK has backed the eventual competition winner more times than any other country by awarding them the top points on 25 occasions. Romania and Azerbaijan have never guessed the winner correctly.

Countries that have predicted the winner most times 

1. United Kingdom - 25 times ‘maximum points’ votes given to the eventual winner 
2. Switzerland - 22 
3. Belgium - 21 
4. Germany - 20 
5. Norway - 19 
6. Sweden - 19 
7. Israel - 17 
8. Austria - 17 
9. Finland - 17 
10. Netherlands - 17 
- - - - - - - - - - - - 
26. Malta - 7 
 
Countries with the best winner prediction rate

Looking at the “prediction rate”, Malta has guessed the winner correctly one in five times. Latvia and Australia have backed the winner most often – in half of the finals they've been eligible to vote in. However, Australia has so far only voted four times.

1. Latvia - 50% of the ‘maximum points’ votes given to the eventual winner 
2. Australia - 50% 
3. Slovakia - 43% 
4. Poland - 39% 
5. Russia - 38% 
6. Israel - 38% 
7. Slovenia - 38% 
8. Estonia - 38% 
9. United Kingdom - 36% 
10. Switzerland - 36% 
- - - - - - - - - - - - 
31. Malta - 21%

Instead the data shows that Romania and Moldova have received as much as 86% of ‘maximum points’ votes awarded to them from each other, while Malta doesn’t have a point ally that it could count on year after year.  

  1. Romania and Moldova - 86% of 'maximum points' votes awarded to each other 
  2. Armenia and Russia - 47% 
  3. Ukraine and Azerbaijan 29% 
  4. Latvia and Estonia - 25% 
  5. Slovenia and Croatia - 21% 
  6. Portugal and Ukraine - 19% 
  7. Estonia and Sweden - 18 % 
  8. Portugal and Spain - 18% 
  9. FYR Macedonia and Bosnia & Herzegovina - 18% 
  10. Bosnia & Herzegovina and Croatia - 18% 

Looking at Eurovision blocs – groups of countries that tend to award points to each other – the English-speaking Europe isn’t guilty of “favouritism” to the extent that Cyprus and Greece are, followed by blocs formed of Eastern European countries. 

Top 10 blocs that have favoured a country in the same bloc 

  1. Cyprus and Greece - 69.8%  
  2. Ex-Yugoslavian countries - 27.6% 
  3. Ex-Soviet countries - 22.7% 
  4. Baltic countries - 21.2% 
  5. Spain and Portugal - 17.8% 
  6. Nordic countries - 12.9% 
  7. English-speaking Europe - 10% 
  8. French-speaking Europe - 8.3% 
  9. Benelux countries - 7.7% 
  10. German-speaking Europe - 5.6% 

More in Music