UK & World News
Eurovision Contest: Spain 'Told Not To Win'
As Engelbert Humperdinck aims for a UK victory at the Eurovision song contest this weekend, one country is actually hoping it does NOT win.
Spain's entrant has admitted it would be best if she did not score top marks at the competition as the country would struggle financially to host next year's event.
Singer Pastora Soler told ABC Punto Radio: "If we won, I think it would be impossible to stage the next edition because it costs so much money."
In the lead-up to this year's contest in Baku, Azerbaijan, violent clashes between police and protesters have broken out with 40 people arrested.
The activists are demanding the release of political prisoners and the resignation of the government.
But even within the competition, entrants are worrying about the political and financial problems in their own countries.
Contest rules state that the public broadcaster of the nation that wins must host the following year.
Spanish singer Soler, whose latest album got to number three in her country's charts, will sing her ballad Quedate Conmigo (Stay With Me).
Directors from Spain's broadcaster, TVE, sent a joke message to her, saying: "Please, don't win!"
The 33-year-old singer told the AFP news agency: "I think it is not the moment, neither for Spain nor for the Spanish public, to win Eurovision."
Spain has won the competition twice, in 1968 and 1969.
On Thursday evening the line-up for the contest was finalised with 26 nations competing in Saturday's live contest.
Alongside veteran singer Humperdinck, Irish twins Jedward are also through to the final with their song Waterline.
Bookmakers William Hill currently have Sweden's entry, Loreen, favourite to win at 5/4 with Russia's singing grannies 5/1 and Serbia and Italy both 10/1.
The UK last won Eurovision in 1997 with Katrina And The Waves' song Love Shine A Light.