Paul the octopus, who shot to fame during the soccer World Cup last year for his flawless record in predicting the outcome of games, will get a shrine to mark three months since he died, his aquarium said on Monday.
The tentacled tipster will on Thursday be honoured with a “Paul Corner” at his former home, containing his ashes and a “huge memorial”, the centre in western Germany said.
“There will be a statue around 1,80m-high of Paul, on top of a football, in the middle of which will be a see-through window with the golden urn containing Paul’s ashes,” spokesperson Tanja Munzig told Agence France-Presse.
Paul thrilled punters and cost bookmakers a small fortune during the World Cup in South Africa in June and July by defying the odds to tip seven German matches correctly, as well as Spain’s 1-0 triumph against the Netherlands in the final.
For the prediction, two boxes were lowered into the salty soothsayer’s tank, each containing a mussel and the flag of the two opposing teams.
Watched by a myriad of reporters, Paul would head to one box, wrench open the lid and gobble the tasty morsel, with the box he picked being deemed the likely winner.
His astonishing choices made him a global media phenomenon. His later predictions were carried live on rolling news channels in Germany.
He died peacefully in his sleep aged nearly three in October, sparking hundreds of messages of condolences from his Facebook fan club, whose ranks have more than tripled since his death to 200 000.
The aquarium unveiled a replacement, French octopus named Paul II, on November 3.
The new cephalopod has not yet been tested on the field of play, although speculation is rife that he could be wheeled out for the next European championship, due to be hosted by Ukraine and Poland in 2012. — Sapa-AFP