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Romance? Niall's much too busy, says dad

HE may be one fifth of the most popular acts on The X Factor, but Niall Horan is "too busy" for a girlfriend.

The Mullingar native (16) is wowing audiences with One Direction every week and has become the subject of many a teen crush in the process.

Although he has been linked to former X Factor colleague Sophia Wardman of Belle Amie, his father Bobby shot down rumours of any romance, saying he simply doesn't have the time.

And Mr Horan said the rumours became so outrageous that he was surprised that his teenage son hasn't been linked to 51-year-old Mary Byrne.

Speaking to the Herald, he said: "If you listened to everything that's said, he nearly went with Mary Byrne at one stage. They are so focused on this, I just don't think they have the time. True, they are all in the one house now, but there are very few in it.

"They are putting in huge hours practising until midnight, and this is going back a long time ago."

His proud father added that his son is constantly dogged by rumours, but insists there isn't any truth to the majority of them.


"So many people are mentioning it, most of them aren't true. But I can tell you this, he's a teenager and how many tell their fathers who they're seeing?

"They're having an absolutely fantastic time. They're gelling really well. I won't say like they're brothers, because brothers fight but they get along great and they stick together."

Mr Horan went on to say that he has even bonded with the family members of Niall's bandmates during the live shows.

"People might think it's an act, but we have also gelled with their families. They are lovely people -- ordinary, working class people like ourselves."

Although he doesn't get to see his teenage son as much these days due to his hectic rehearsal schedule, he is giving Niall his full support.

"We get approximately one hour after each show, and on The Xtra Factor one weekend, we got 10 minutes," he said.

"It's a family show as well, they like families to participate, which we do."

The singer's proud father said that the fivesome are determined to make it all the way to the final and Niall is never as happy as when he's on stage.