It was only a fortnight ago that Simon Cowell paraded Cheryl Cole as one of the four judges who would lead X Factor America into the promised land on network TV. Last night, it emerged, Cheryl’s dream may already be over.
According to reports from various US news outlets, the 27-year-old is to be replaced by Pussycat Dolls singer Nicole Scherzinger with immediate effect.
Apparently network bosses remained concerned that Cheryl’s Newcastle accent would be too difficult for the average American to understand. It is also understood that as a relative unknown Stateside, Cole was finding it difficult to be taken seriously by the contestants when offering criticism.
US celebrity gossip website TMZ report a “lack of chemistry” between Cole and her fellow judge, Paula Abdul, as another problem on the fledgeling show.
The decision is thought to have been taken by American network bosses rather than by Simon Cowell, who has openly championed Cole for the position for many months.
There is speculation that Cheryl may return to the British version of the programme, which is yet to finalise its 2011 line-up.
Syco and Fox have thus far been unavailable for comment.