'Super talented Irish can provide X Factor winner this year' - Olly Murs
Olly Murs said he would love to see an Irish winner of the X Factor this year.
The show's former presenter has told the Herald he believes it's high time that an Irish entrant claimed victory in the ITV contest.
"The Irish have always been super-talented in the show and 100pc, there should be a winner that's Irish," Olly said.
We've already had one huge winner from the show, he added, in the form of One Direction superstar Niall Horan.
"They finished third and obviously you've just got to use that platform to the best of your ability. I never thought I'd still be around after all these years. I'm really proud," he said.
The star, who finished second in the 2009 show, has also tipped Niall as the one with the talent to launch a massive solo career.
Olly toured with One Direction last summer and said he struck up a firm friendship with the Mullingar native.
"Niall's one of my mates so of course I'd back him to do well. I'm sure if he is doing an album, it will do well," he said.
And even though he sensationally quit the show that he presented last year, he'll still be tuning in to see the 12th series this year.
"I'm not bitter. I didn't get sacked from the show, I left it myself. I've still got a great friendship with Simon (Cowell) and everyone down there," he said.
"This year the X Factor has gone old school. It's gone back to basics with the old judging line up with Sharon, Louis and Nicole.
"It's four familiar faces that viewers have seen before so I'm sure it will do well. I still love the X Factor. It put me where I am today."
Back in Dublin this week to unveil his new single, You Don't Know Love, Olly said he always loves coming over to Ireland as he has such a huge fan base.
Last year saw him play three sell-out gigs at the 3Arena and he said he'd love to perform at Croke Park next time.
"One of my dreams is to do that and I hope I get the opportunity to one day do my own show.
"I did the three nights which was amazing and we're getting bigger and bigger crowds each time we play here," he said.