Simon Cowell confirms new X Factor judge is a female - but keeps fans guessing
Fourth panellist will be announced this week after contracts have been signed
Simon Cowell has confirmed the new X Factor judge will be female and she will be revealed this week.
The music mogul – who is returning to the panel alongside Louis Walsh and Cheryl Cole – was speaking at The Health Lottery Champagne Tea Party at The Savoy Hotel in London yesterday.
He said the fourth panellist will be announced this week after contracts have been signed.
“We've settled on someone,” he said. “We are going to make an announcement this week.
“We've decided... [but] we haven't got the contract signed yet. It's going to be a girl.”
The 54-year-old confessed the decision took so long because he needed to be sure the new judge could totally commit to the series and the acts.
''The hardest thing was not just finding a name but someone who is going to do the job. They have to really commit to working with the artists and they've got to give up a lot of their time and that's why it was a long decision,” he added.
There have been widespread rumours that Mel B will be the fourth judge on the show. She was a guest judge in 2012 and is currently in her second season of America’s Got Talent.
Louis Walsh (51) recently confirmed that he is definitely returning as a judge on the new season of X Factor.
He had previously said he was happy to finish his run after 10 seasons, but has signed up for his eleventh year on the talent show.
Louis and Cheryl (30) have had some well documented differences in the past, but Simon said they will have to get on.
“Look, they don't get on great but they're just going to have to now. They'll be OK,” he said
The X Factor will return later this year.