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Saturday 10 December 2016

Is that a yes from Simon? Louis Walsh 'in talks' to return to The X Factor

Sasha Brady

Published 31/03/2016 | 14:53

Louis Walsh is hotly tipped to return as a judge on this year's The X Factor
Louis Walsh is hotly tipped to return as a judge on this year's The X Factor
Louis Walsh: Could he return to X Factor?

Louis Walsh is reportedly in talks to return to The X Factor as the show attempts to win back older audiences.

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The Mayo man has flown to Los Angeles to meet with Simon Cowell and the show's bosses, according to The Sun.

It's reported that the 63-year-old will replace Nick Grimshaw as a judge on the talent show as it launches a bid to entice back older audiences who have swapped The X Factor for BBC's Strictly Come Dancing.

A source told The Sun that Simon "didn't really want Louis to go in the first place" and is doing all he can to win him back.

The X Factor judges in 2014 (Syco/Thames TV)
The X Factor judges in 2014 (Syco/Thames TV)

“He’s doing all he can to sign him for the next series. Louis is up for it. Simon wants an older person back after admitting last year’s series was too youthful, which might have made more people go to Strictly," a source revealed to The Sun.

One Direction star Louis Tomlinson was tipped to replace Nick Grimshaw but he has been ruled out as a potential judge as the show tries to connect with its older audiences.

The X Factor have declined to comment on who will make the final judging panel but bookies are convinced that Louis will make the final cut.

 "The return of Louis Walsh to the X Factor judging panel has sparked a gamble on another shake-up, with money coming for Sharon Osborne," said Coral's Nicola McGeady.

Louis Walsh: Could he return to X Factor?
Louis Walsh: Could he return to X Factor?

"However, we are not convinced that Cowell will make any more changes and if the betting is right, he will be joined by Louis, Rita, and Cheryl for the next series."

According the odds, the return of Louis Walsh will be the only change made to the panel, with Simon Cowell and Cheryl both massive odds-on shots to return at 1-8 and 1-6 respectively. The only possible doubt is Rita Ora, although she is still odds-on to keep her job as a judge at 1-3.

The return of Walsh however has sparked a flurry of bets on another shake-up. The firm has cut Sharon Osborne’s odds to 14-1 from 33-1 to make a comeback, while it’s 33-1 that Zayn Malik joins the line-up. Other names in the betting include Nicole Scherzinger at 16-1, Paloma Faith at 25-1, and Noel Gallagher at 50-1.

 "The return of Louis Walsh to the X Factor judging panel has sparked a gamble on another shake-up, with money coming for Sharon Osborne," said Coral's Nicola McGeady.

 "However, we are not convinced that Cowell will make any more changes and if the betting is right, he will be joined by Louis, Rita, and Cheryl for the next series," added McGeady.

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