Louis Walsh has admitted he is astonished by Zayn Malik's decision to pull out of One Direction's tour but says it does "not necessarily spell the end".
The Hometown manager said that even if Zayn leaves permanently the band will continue as a four piece.
"Even if Zayn was to leave completely, it doesn't have to be the end of the band," he told the Irish Daily Star.
"The same thing happened to Take That and to the Spice Girls and to Westlife. They all lost a member of the band and it doesn't necessarily spell the end.
"I think they can still continue on without Zayn if he decides to leave. I think they will continue. There's no sign that any of the rest of the band are unhappy."
Zayne (22) pulled out of the tour ahead of dates in Jakarta and Manila although he is expected to return before the band play CapeTown in eight days time.
The announcement that Zayn had been signed off with stress came less than 24 hours after pictures emerged of him with a girl named Lauren Richardson (19) in a nightclub.
Zayn, who has been engaged to Little Mix star Perrie Edwards (21) since August 2013, took to Twitter to clear up any confusion surrounding the images.
He tweeted, "I'm 22 years old. I love a girl named Perrie Edwards. And there's a lot of jealous f***s in this world I'm sorry for what it looks like."
Louis went on to say that touring causes a lot of pressure especially when an artist has personal problems and that a break may be all that Zayn needs to work through his issues before returning to 1D.
In November, Zayn sparked more controversy when he didn't attend a live interview with NBC host Matt Lauer in Orlando, Frlorida.
During the interview, Lauer questioned the boys about Zayn's absence asking them about "rumoured substance abuse" which the four bandmates denied.
Later, Zayn took to Twitter to express his anger about the interview, insisting a stomach bug was to blame for his absence.
Earlier that month, Zayn was absent from band duties again when he was absent from a video the band made to receive an MTV Europe award.
Zayn hit the headlines last May when a video emerged of himself and bandmate Louis Tomlinson laughing and smoking about marijuana as they smoked a roll-up "joint" in a car during the Latin Amercian leg of their 2014 stadium tour.
One Direction are currently travelling the world on their On The Road Again tour.