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What\'s The Deal With Portugal?

So, yet another Superdraw has been and gone. Finally a winner has emerged and the winning ticket was sold in Portugal – AGAIN!

A total of €163.5 million, or approx. £113 million, was won by a couple who run a café in Coimbra, Portugal. The winners, who opted to remain anonymous, have two daughters and also grandchildren.

They're also the third EuroMillions Superdraw winners from Portugal in just over a year.

Portugal Takes The Lead

Three Superdraws in just over a year – quite an achievement. The first came in October of last year, when one lucky player from the town of Castelo Blanco won €190 million. That value, currently approximately £134 million, is the absolute maximum value you can win with EuroMillions.

This put the winner tied with Britain's Adrian and Gillian Bayfords for the biggest EuroMillions jackpot of all time. Except for the fact that the Portuguese taxman takes 20% of all lottery wins, so the Bayfords ended up with more money. 

The first Superdraw of 2015 was held in March, and again an anonymous Portugese player won. This winner came from a town called Felgueiras, in the north. The lucky player scooped €100 million, and landed Portugal an impressive two in a row.

Britain blocked Portugal's chances of a hat trick back in June when one anonymous player won £93 million. When the November Superdraw was announced we had hoped that we could make EuroMillions history by also scoring two in a row but it was not to be. Perhaps the date, Friday 13th, proved a bad omen.

The Luckiest EuroMillions Country

EuroMillions has been running since 2004. Britain, France and Spain were the first countries to participate, Portugal didn't join until eight months after.

France currently tops the leaderboard for most jackpots won, at 78. Spain is second at 74, then Portugal, 58, and Britain is forth at 55.

Thing is the UK has a population of around 64 million. Sure we've had considerable success playing EuroMillions, but we do have the advantage of superior numbers.

Portugal, on the other hand, has a population of just 10.4 million. Yet somehow they're ahead of us and, since last October, they've won over €453.5 million, or approx £320.7 million, in Superdraw prizes alone.

And that's saying nothing of all the other prizes that have been won by Portuguese players over the past few months.

Despite the fact that the lottery is playable in 12 countries, Portugal appears on seven out of the top 25 biggest wins.

If you look at the top ten biggest wins there are four entries from Portugal; two shared wins, two outright wins. The highest of which is was worth €190 million, the highest winnable amount.

This latest win makes it official – Portugal is the luckiest EuroMillions country.

So how do they do it? Or, to put it another way?

What is the deal with Portugal?

How is this small country on the Atlantic's edge able to beat out far bigger nations like France, Spain and Britain? Countries, it should be noted, who had an eight month head start to rack up wins.

Is Portugal a particularly fortunate country? Not according to any economic forecasts. Indeed the country is wracked by austerity and currently has an unemployment rate of around 13%.

That's 1.35 million people out of work and facing a hungry Christmas. So spending a couple of Euro for a change to win hundreds of millions, no matter how high the odds, makes playing EuroMillions a no-brainer.

In other words the reason Portuguese players do so well in EuroMillions isn't because they're lucky, it's because they're hungry for it!

You know that phrase in sports – the other guys just wanted it more. Portugal are those other guys, and they've got a tenacity that's often hard to match.  

So now the jackpot has reset and we've started all over again. With no winner last night we've not got £17 million in the pot. Not as impressive an amount as it was last Friday, but still more than enough to have the happiest Christmas ever and set you and your loved ones up for life.

The only question is how badly do you want it this time? Badly? Then say it out loud, "I want the happiest Christmas ever, I never want to worry about money ever again – I want that £17 million EuroMillions jackpot!"

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