Cheryl Cole, Simon Cowell… can we have Olly Murs now please?

The X Factor 2014 judging line-up is taking shape, and there’s a spot for the former contestant on the panel, says Emma Daly


Cheryl Cole and Simon Cowell are both returning to the X Factor this year. I can already sense the countless Saturday nights in. Who am I kidding? All of the Saturday nights in. And Sunday. X Factor likes a double whammy. Who am I to argue? My social life can wait.


But given I’ll be shoving my plans firmly out of the window for the latter part of this year, I’d like to state the case for Olly Murs to be on the panel.

Yes he was a contestant. Yes he was an Xtra Factor host. Yes, he’s just a baby on the music scene compared to others they could scoop up. Robbie Williams, Dannii Minogue, Rita Ora… these names have been flung around as potential contenders.

Like the Troublemaker singer, they’ve all had some sort of involvement in the show. But Cheryl herself came from the talent show circuit, so there can’t be complaints he’s not the right type of star for the panel. Olly fits the mould.

Remember Olly’s first audition in 2009? “I’m just a normal geezer,” he said before basically flirting with an entire auditorium with his rendition of Superstitious. Cheryl grinned. Dannii grinned. Louis bopped his head. Simon bopped his head. He showed off his biceps for heavens sake. And they loved it. Loved it.

Imagine the banter with Cheryl. An Essex lad and a Geordie beauty. Golden. Of course Simon would probably try to remind Olly he only got where he is today because of him. Especially if he tried to criticise Mr Cowell’s acts. It’d be far more entertaining than most of the singers anyway.

Unless that man who sang to the framed picture of his cat comes back.

And Mr Murs isn’t scared to stand by his own opinion. Last year he voiced his doubts about one of Gary Barlow’s favourite bands when he guest appeared at the Judges’ Houses stage. Gary got all nervous and furrowed his brow. Olly’s opinion mattered.

And he’s hip. Olly does that heart symbol with his hands in his advert. You know the one? Totally down with the kids.

Plus, this could pave the way for the panel to have just one female judge for the first time ever. Louis Walsh is surely coming back, right? He said he was leaving. Then sort of changed his mind. And has since kept quite quiet. Now Simon and Cheryl are back together he wouldn’t want to miss out, would he?

Let’s be honest, the X Factor wouldn’t be quite the same without Louis crying or yelling about everyone being a young someone or other.

It’s not like we need the gossip of two female judges feuding. Remember the tense fash-off each time Cheryl and Dannii stepped out? Drama, drama, drama. We don’t need any more of that. Cheryl is going to be there with Simon. Having been kicked off the X Factor in the US. Having won money from the show for loss of earnings. Fireworks enough, no? Heck, Cheryl confirmed her return with a picture of her hands around Simon’s neck. This is going to be good.

So, let’s not bother with any other fuss. Throw in a cheeky Olly with his rolled up trousers and funky little hats and be done with it.