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Grimmy has long been rumoured to be replacing Louis Walsh, but a source told the paper it would now take a “massive curveball to mess up the deal” and that he would be announced as the show’s newest recruit in the next day or so.
The report also claims that Simon has signed up Capital FM duo Rickie Haywood-Williams and Melvin Odoom to front ITV2 spin-off show ‘The Xtra Factor’, replacing axed Sarah Jane Crawford.
Rickie and Melvin
Simon is also said to still be chasing Rita Ora for the final spot on the panel alongside him and Cheryl Fernandez-Versini, with the ‘Voice’ judge claiming at the weekend that she was enjoying being at the centre of a bidding war between the two shows.
While she has previously turned down a role on the show in 2013, she is said to be seriously considering the latest offer to join because of her close friendship with Grimmy.
A source recently told the Daily Star: “Re-signing Cheryl and getting Grimmy changed everything.
“Rita really wants to be on that panel now so it’s a matter of making the logistics work. There’s a lot to work through.”
However, Grimmy’s signing may not go down too well with fans of the show, as he faced a backlash on Friday (12 June) when Chris Evans backed him to front a revived series of ‘TFI Friday’.
Either way, the panel must be finalised completely before next month, as the show announced last week that filming of the arena auditions will commence on 6 July.
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