Louis Walsh shoots from the lip on X Factor winners and judges

Louis on Niall Horan: 'He is without doubt the luckiest boy on the planet. That’s all I’ll say'
Louis on Niall Horan: 'He is without doubt the luckiest boy on the planet. That’s all I’ll say'

The Mayo man pulls no punches as he runs the rule over all the former winners and his colleagues on the judging panel in a quick fire Q & A.

Mag+: What the hell actually is the X factor?

Louis: Ha! Robbie Williams has it. Bottle whatever he has. Ask him. He isn’t a great singer but he has The X Factor. 

Mag+: Has anyone on The X Factor ever had the X factor? 

Louis: [uncharacteristic silence] Eh…yeah…a few.

Mag+: Names please.

Louis: No [laughs].

Mag+: Okay well let’s play a game. We say a name and you say the first thing that comes into your head. 

Louis: No problem. Let’s go.

Mag+: We’ll start slow…Steve Brookstein (2004 winner)?

Louis: Absolute loser.

Mag+: WOW, what about Shayne Ward (2005 winner)? 

Louis: An amazing singer.

Mag+: Awww…that’s nice. Leona Lewis (2006 winner)?

Louis: What. A. Voice. She is totally unique. 

Mag+: What about 2007’s Leon Jackson. 

Louis: Who? [laughing] No, seriously – when I hear his name I think of Scotland. That’s all. 

Mag+: Harsh. Alexandra Burke (2008)?

Louis: She is a trooper. A super trooper. 

Mag+: Remember Joe McElderry (2009 winner)?

Louis: I do. He will do well in the West End. 

Mag+: 2010’s Matt Cardle…

Louis: A great voice, but that’s it.

Mag+: What about Little Mix (2011 winners)?

Louis: They produce amazing pop songs. 

Mag+: James Arthur (2012)

Louis: Reasonably talented but very troubled.

Mag+: Sam Bailey (2013).

Louis: She’s a belter of a singer and a person.

Mag+: Agreed. What about that chap Ben Haenow from 2014?

Louis: He’s almost good. 

Mag+: Ouch. What about last year’s winner Louisa Johnson? 

Louis: I absolutely loved her last year. I was supporting her from the start. She’s a superstar. 

Mag+: Right, let’s kick this up a notch…Simon Cowell?

Louis: Ha. Unique, successful, outrageous, British, camp, over the top, animal lover and a great great employer. How was that?

Mag+: Bloody predictable. Caroline Flack? Surely you can put the boot in on her?

Louis: Absolutely not. Loved her. She was so much fun. I wish she was still part of the show in some way. 

Mag+: Well, that’s just wrong, Louis. What about our Dermot O’Leary? 

Louis: A safe pair of hands. Oodles of charisma and great with the acts back stage. 

Mag+: And Nicole Scherzinger? 

Louis: Without a doubt the best judge on the show. She is a triple threat. She can act, dance and most importantly she can sing. She is a breath of fresh air in between the oldies. 

Mag+: We did not see that coming. What about Tulisa (judge 2011-12)?

Louis: I won’t say a bad word about her. I got to know the real Tulisa. She is amazing. Her mum is Irish too. We are still in contact today.

Mag+: Okay that’s just weird. Cheryl (A judge 2008-10, 14-15)?

Louis: She had a great run. I think it was right for her to go away and work on her music. She’ll be very happy with that lad from One Direction (runners up in 2010). 

Mag+: It’s Liam.

Louis: Yeah, him.

Mag+: And finally, what about national hero and global pop icon Niall Horan?

Louis: He is without doubt the luckiest boy on the planet. That’s all I’ll say.