By Emily Goddard

Luciano Barra has predicted that Norway will top the Pyeongchang 2018 overall medals table ©Getty ImagesNorway will finish at the top of the overall medals table with 11 golds at the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics, Italian expert Luciano Barra has predicted.

Using a formula based on World Championship results during the current Olympic cycle, renowned projector of results Barra, the Italian Olympic Committee's former sports managing director and deputy chief executive of the Turin 2006 Winter Olympics, believes the Norwegians will claim a total of 19 medals in the South Korean city.

Coming second to Norway at Pyeongchang 2018, he predicts, will be the United States, with nine gold, seven silver and seven bronze medals, and Germany in third with eight gold, five silver and five bronze medals.

Austria is placed fourth with seven gold, eight silver and six bronze medals, while last winter's Olympic and Paralympic Games hosts Russia are fifth and expected to take home five gold, five silver and two bronze medals, which would be a significant drop from their first place finish at Sochi 2014, where they secured a total of 33 medals - 13 gold, 11 silver and nine bronze.

Hosts South Korea, meanwhile, are considerably further down in 22nd place, with just one bronze medal.

Luciano Barra has predicted that Norway, the US and Germany will finish first, second and third at Pyeongchang 2018 ©Luciano BarraLuciano Barra has predicted that Norway, the US and Germany will finish first, second and third at Pyeongchang 2018 ©Luciano Barra

There are, however, still just less than three years to go until the Games get underway and a number of World Championships still to take place, which will likely have an impact on the projection as time goes on.

This latest medal projection from Barra, who has been praised for the accuracy of his predictions ahead of recent Games, comes following the conclusion of the International Ski Federation Nordic Ski World Championships in Falun, Sweden.

Norway proved strong across all disciplines - cross country, ski jumping and Nordic combined - and topped the overall medals table, with a total of 20 medals, 11 of them gold.

The projection also takes into account the tournaments for 65 of the 98 Olympic events on the Pyeongchang 2018 programme that have been completed, but excludes results from the International Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation World Championships in Winterberg, Germany, which got underway on February 23 and are due to continue until March 8.

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