UK's James Newman scores nil points at Eurovision as Italy triumphs
The United Kingdom was handed a crushing defeat in the Eurovision Song Contest, scoring nil points.
The competition, which was held in Rotterdam, Netherlands, after the show was cancelled in 2020, was won by Italy with rock band Maneskin’s Zitti E Buoni.
They are the first group to win the competition since 2006.
The UK’s hopeful James Newman scored zero points from the jury vote and from the public vote, the only entry to do so poorly.
He took the defeat in good humour, drinking a beer and standing up to applause from the live audience in the arena.
Newman, who is the older brother of pop star John Newman, had hoped to win over viewers with his rendition of upbeat track Embers, which was inspired by the end of lockdown.
He performed in front of a crowd of 3,500 fans at the Ahoy arena.
The UK is no stranger to the bottom of the Eurovision leaderboard and came in last place in 2019 with Michael Rice’s Bigger Than Us.
Famous fans of the contest were quick to send Newman their support.
Great British Bake Off star Matt Lucas tweeted: “We love you James Newman.”
BBC Breakfast host Dan Walker wrote: “Wowsers #NilPoints
“Well done James Newman for laughing it off.
“Only way to respond to a spectacular Europe-wide boot in the bits.”
Singer Tom Grennan wrote: “JAMES NEWMAN IS A TOP LAD.”
Drag Race star Michelle Visage said: “I am sending this tweet to James Newman and James only. You were INCREDIBLE.”
On stage after the band’s victory, Maneskin frontman Damiano David shouted into the microphone: “We just wanted to say to the whole of Europe, to the whole world, rock and roll never dies.”