Russian betting firm wants octopus Paul

A Russian betting firm wants to buy psychic World Cup octopus Paul as a bookmaker and pay him a salary of $NZ7000 a month, according to local media.

"He will be one of our 120 staff employees," Oleg Zhuravsky, co-owner of Bet League, told the Soviet Sport newspaper.

"Our specialists receive around $US3000 (NZ$4221) a month, so we will pay Paul $US5000 (NZ$7035)."

Mr Zhuravsky said he was willing to pay the Sea Life Oceanarium attraction in Oberhausen, Germany, where Paul lives, as much as 100,000 euros ($NZ182,052) for the oracle octopus.

Paul gained worldwide fame during this year's FIFA World Cup for correctly predicting the results of eight matches, including the final.

During his divinations, Paul would be presented with two boxes each containing a mussel and each marked with the flag of the team playing. During the World Cup, he correctly predicted the results of all seven of Germany's games, as well as the final between Spain and the Netherlands.

Despite Paul announcing his retirement from the divination game after the World Cup, there have since been several efforts to buy him.

Last week, Madrid Zoo announced it was bidding to buy him. The eight-legged oracle has become something of a hero in Spain since he correctly predicted its football team's World Cup victory.

- NZ Herald staff

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