VGTRK, the Russian broadcaster, will not confirm that Sergey Lazarev has been selected for Eurovision 2019 after reports on Russian social media and media.
Russian social media has been awash with reports that Sergey Lazarev has been selected to return to the Eurovision Song Contest. The singer who represented Russia in 2016 according to reports, has been internally selected by VGTRK to perform in Tel Aviv, something that the broadcaster has refused to confirm. In a statement to escKaz, a source at VGTRK stated that;
We do not confirm that! The official participant will be submitted at the end of January.
VGTRK stated over the past weekend that they will announce their participant in Eurovision 2019 at the end of January. RIA Novosti also reported that the Russian broadcaster does not have a shortlist of artists that they are approaching to represent Russia in Tel Aviv, Israel.
Russia finished 15th in the second semi-final of Eurovision 2018 scoring 65 points from the public and juries. The country finished 17th in the jury vote with 14 points and 11th with the public on 51 points. Julia Samoylova who represented Russia at the Eurovision Song Contest 2018 revealed after the contest that she had considered withdrawing from the competition in the run up to the show in Lisbon.
Russia in the Eurovision Song Contest Russia debuted in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1994 and has gone on to be one of the most successful countries in the contest. Since the mid-00s Russia has had a string of strong results including their first and only victory to date in 2008. Dima Bilan won the contest in Belgrade, Serbia with the song “Believe” taking the contest to Moscow the following year. In the 2015 and 2016, Russia finished in 2nd and 3rd place respectively in the final.