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World Cup: Octopus wraps arm around Germany again

June 29, 2010 |  8:11 am

Octopus_400 The Associated Press in Berlin says octopus oracle Paul is picking Germany to win again, this time over Argentina in a World Cup quarterfinal.

Paul, an octopus at Sea Life Aquarium in Oberhausen, Germany, who rose to global fame after correctly predicting all four of Germany's games in this year's tournament, forecast that Saturday's game would be a tough battle and that it may even end in a penalty shootout.

Although English-born Paul made a snappy decision to pick Germany over his native country in its last match, this time it took the octopus about an hour to approach a water glass containing a mussel marked with a German flag, said Tanja Munzig, a spokeswoman for the aquarium.

Two-year-old Paul has proven to be a reliable oracle in the past. In addition to predicting Germany's win over England, he also foretold the victories over Australia and Ghana and the country's loss to Serbia. During the 2008 European Championship, he correctly predicted 80% of all German games, Munzig said.

Despite being a naturalized German, Munzig said, Paul is not a biased octopus, and "he may even have some relatives in Argentina who emigrated there many generations ago."

-- Kevin Baxter in Pretoria, South Africa

Photo: Paul picks Germany again Tuesday. Credit: Patrik Stollarz / AFP / Getty Images.