RICHARD ORD: Did Euro 2020's psychic animals see it coming home?

England’s defeat has destroyed, once and for all, my trust in the psychic abilities of animals to foretell the future. You’re probably the same.

Wednesday, 14th July 2021, 12:00 am
Penshaw Equestrian Centre's Ezmie Stanton with Yellow the psychic pony who predicts a lose result ahead of the England V Italy Euro2020 final.

Since Saka missed that vital spot kick for England in the final of Euro 2020, I haven’t been able to look our psychic octopus in the eye.

Of course, one psychic swallow doesn’t always foretell a super summer, but I’d kinda hoped this time the animals - particularly the psychic ones - would rally round our national team. I should have known better.

In this neck of the woods, it was Yellow the psychic Pony who was holding all the cards. After correctly predicting England victories early doors, Yellow, the 20-year-old pony, who lives at Penshaw Equestrian Centre, made a donkey of himself by calling a defeat in the semi-finals against Denmark.

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My trust in psychic farm animals was naturally dented. Which is why I bought myself a psychic octopus. They have a decent track record in fortune telling.

You may remember Paul the psychic octopus (I forget his surname) who, game after game, correctly predicted Germany’s progress in the 2010 World Cup.

They don’t come cheap these psychic octopuses, I’ll tell you. £350! Must have seen me coming. Which, come to think of it, I suppose, as a psychic octopus, he must have…

Anyway, turns out even the psychic octopus isn’t infallible. Paul was good, but he wasn’t perfect. He correctly predicted 12 out of 14 games. Not bad, but hardly Nostradamus.

With my faith in Yellow rattled and natural uncertainty about my own octopus, I cast my net wider.

I settled on the supernatural beak of Mac the psychic parrot (again, apologies for not getting his surname), from South Shields.

Mac predicted an England Euro 2020 victory, while Yellow went Italy. Mac, as I was to discover to my cost (a £2 bet on England), was clearly winging it.

Can animals really be psychic? I doubt it. Though, as a pal pointed out, if you did have a psychic pet and the paper’s found out, surely you’d throw nosy journalists off the scent with a couple of deliberately bad predictions, and then rake in the money yourself by betting on the animal’s real predictions?

I put that question to Yellow’s young rider Ezmie Stanton, but she just drove off. She probably didn’t hear me over the sound of her car’s engine. Those Bugatti La Voiture Noire supercars are quite noisy.