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Octopus predicts German defeat in World Cup semis against Spain

Last updated on: July 7, 2010 09:32 IST

Paul the octopus has become a celebrity

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Soccer fans across Germany will be hoping a "psychic" cephalopod's fabled skills of prophecy have failed him after Paul the octopus predicted a German loss in their World Cup semi-final with Spain.

- Earlier prediction: Psychic Octopus picks Germany to beat Argentina

With a 100 percent record so far, the British-born aquarium dweller at Sea Life in Oberhausen, western Germany has become a celebrity having correctly predicted a series of German wins and even Germany's surprise group stage loss to Serbia.

Photographs: Reuters


Image: Paul the octopus

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Paul opened the box with the Spanish flag

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On Tuesday, Paul once again was given the choice of picking food from two different plastic containers lowered into his tank - one decorated with a Spanish flag and one with a German flag.

The container which Paul opens first is seen as his pick.

He settled on both containers at first in a sign of hesitation before opening the box with the Spanish flag.


Image: Paul opens the Spanish box

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Paul incorrectly picked Germany as victors during Euro 2008

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The decision was broadcast live on several news channels in Germany, although commentators immediately cast doubt over the prediction by Paul, who was born in Weymouth, England.

Germans, stunned by Paul's decision to pick Spain, took consolation in the fact that Paul got one of his five picks wrong at the Euro in 2008. Oddly enough it also involved Spain: In the final Paul picked Germany over Spain. But Spain won 1-0.

"We were all a little bit shocked when Paul picked Spain," said Tanja Munzig, a spokeswoman for Sea Life in Oberhausen. "To err is not only human -- animals can also make mistakes. Let's hope Paul got this one wrong."

"Maybe Paul was just trying to give Spain a false sense of security," said Munzig, who said scores of journalists were at Sea Life to witness Paul's latest pick. Thousands of people have visited Sea Life to see Germany's newest celebrity.

"To be honest I'm going to have butterflies in my stomach watching the Spain match," she added. "I'm not a superstitious person but he's had an incredible winning streak so far."


Image: Paul the octopus

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