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Dublin: 4 °C Monday 16 December, 2019

Ireland picked a Eurosong, but the fight between judges was the real show

Linda Martin last night described Aslan’s Billy McGuinness as “an odious little man”.

Billy McGuinness, right, before the row
Billy McGuinness, right, before the row
Image: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

Updated 22.00pm

KASEY SMITH AND Can-Linn were last night selected to represent Ireland at the Eurovision Song Contest in May.

That, however, is likely to be lost in today’s headlines after a row between the judges threatened to steal the thunder of the performers.

Aslan’s Billy McGuinness, who was serving as a mentor to Laura O’Neill fired the opening salvo, accusing judge Louis Walsh of trying to influence the vote. He said that Walsh had worked with two of the acts and had enlisted One Direction’s Niall Horan to drum up votes.

(William Finnegan/YouTube)

After O’Neill’s performance, Walsh fired back. But it wasn’t until Linda Martin became involved that things properly got heated. Host Ryan Tubridy was forced to stand between the two as Martin reacted to McGuinness’ criticism of her pal, calling McGuinness “an odious little man”.

(William Finnegan/YouTube)

It was then left to judges Eoghan McDermott and Maia Dunphy to calm the whole thing down, before Marty Whelan took the reins like a pro.

23-year-old Kasey beat former X-Factor contestant Eoghan Quigg to claim the right to represent Ireland in Denmark.

And, in case you forgot this was about music, here is the winning entry.


Originally published 7.36am

Read: Ireland’s Eurosong hopefuls (and Tubridy) take our fiendish Eurovision quiz

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