Lord Sugar reveals US Apprentice considered replacing Trump with him instead of Schwarzenegger: “I can’t wait to see what a cock-up Arnie makes of it”

The boss of the UK boardroom was in the running to replace Donald Trump, but the Stateside show wanted someone more familiar to US audiences

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Lord Sugar has revealed he was considered as Donald Trump’s replacement on the US version of The Apprentice, but says he’s now looking forward to seeing what a “cock up” new recruit Arnold Schwarzenegger makes of it when it returns. 

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“They did consider me,” Sugar explained at today’s launch of the UK’s 11th series. “But, to be perfectly blunt, the American public don’t know who I am. This is fine. This is why I spend most of my time there. It would have been an interesting thing to do. 

“I could have done both,” he added, saying it wasn’t a case of whether or not he wanted to. “It’s a case of the producers and broadcaster wanting someone who’s more popular to the American public.”

Of new recruit Arnie, Sugar joked: “I’ll be over in America and I can’t wait to see what a cock up he’s going to make of it.”

Trump has stepped down from the series to focus on his campaign for the US presidency, with many viewers taking to Twitter to ponder whether Schwarzenegger’s tenure will bring in a new “You’re terminated” catchphrase in the boardroom (we prefer “Hasta la vista, baby!”)

Meanwhile, Sugar returns to our screens (hurrah!) with Claude Littner joining Karren Brady as an aide. The BBC are billing it as the “toughest” series yet and having had a sneak peek at the first episode today, I can confirm it looks set to be a memorable one. Well, with one candidate suggesting “Sugar Babes” as a team name, it’s got to be a good’n, right?

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The Apprentice returns with a double bill Wednesday (14th) and Thursday (15th) at 9pm on BBC1