Monday, Jul 12, 2010 12:49 PM UTC

Octopus oracle Paul to retire

After correctly predicting 8 World Cup matches, Paul is set to withdraw from soccer prognostication

No more World Cup, no more octopus oracle.

Paul, the octopus who became a pop culture sensation by correctly predicting the outcome of as many World Cup matches as he has legs — all seven of Germany’s games plus the Spain-Netherlands final — is going to retire.

The intuitive invertebrate will “go into retirement and do what he likes to do best: play with his handlers and delight children who come visit to him, Tanja Munzig, a spokeswoman for the Sea Life aquarium in Oberhausen, told AP Television News.

However, Paul took one last curtain call on Monday. Aquarium employees presented the octopus with a golden cup — similar to the official World Cup trophy.

Although the cup was garnished with mussels, Paul ignored it as it was lowered into his tank — showing the world one last time that he isn’t just any old octopus who can be excited simply by shiny bait.

Paul won worldwide attention as he called all of Germany’s games correctly — including its semifinal defeat by Spain. He crowned his career by forecasting correctly that Spain would beat Holland in Sunday’s final.