Monday, December 13, 2010

Dannii's boy Matt Cardle is crowned winner of the X Factor

By Liz Thomas and Chris Johnson

-He beats Rebecca Ferguson into second place as One Direction come third
-He came top of the public vote EVERY week apart from the first one
-Sulky Cher fails to join him on stage with the rest of the contestants

Winner: Matt Cardle has been crowned the X Factor 2010 champion last night in a closely fought contest which saw Rebecca Ferguson come in second place followed by One Direction

He was the cheeky painter and decorator from Essex who won the nation’s hearts with his scruffy charm and sensational voice.

But Matt Cardle is unlikely to pick up a paintbrush again after beating Rebecca Ferguson to win The X Factor in a victory that will make him a multi-millionaire.

More than 20million tuned in to ITV last night to see boy-next-door Cardle secure the £1million recording deal.

And he broke down in tears as the other finalists ran on to the stage to congratulate him, saying: ‘Thanks from the bottom of my heart to everyone who voted for me. It feels really good to be putting a record out soon.

‘To be the last man standing is just mind blowing.’

Boy band One Direction lost out earlier in the evening after coming third in the viewers’ vote, despite heavy backing from mentor Simon Cowell.

In tears: The painter-decorator was overwhelmed after receiving the news, seen right with mentor Dannii Minogue holding his single, a cover of Scottish band Biffy Clyro’s Many Of Horror (When We Collide)

Record deal sorted: Posing here alongside Dannii and X Factor supremo Simon Cowell

He was joined on stage by his fellow X Factor contenders, although one person not present was sulky Cher Lloyd who was eliminated in part 1 of the final on Saturday night.

It comes amid reports the 17-year-old through a huge strop during rehearsals this week, screaming at production staff and claiming that judges Dannii and Louis hated her from the start.

During the ITV2 spin-off show the Xtra Factor last night, Simon commented: 'Everyone [the contestants] was happy for Matt, apart from one.'

Cardle, 27, has been favourite to win during most of the competition and has impressed judges and fans with his edgy style, delivering his own take on songs by stars as varied as Britney Spears to Elton John.

Moment of truth: A nervous Matt and Rebecca are supported by their mentors as they await the result

Gracious in defeat: Rebecca said she was delighted for Matt and was just 'so grateful' to have come as far as she did in the contest

It was also revealed on the Xtra Factor that Matt topped the vote every week bar the first one, when he came second.

His winner’s single will be a cover version of Scottish band Biffy Clyro’s Many Of Horror (When We Collide) and is expected to be Christmas number one.

His mentor Dannii Minogue said: ‘He totally deserves it. Rebecca was incredible competition tonight. He didn’t really believe he had it.’

His mother Jenny could barely contain her tears after congratulating her son, saying: ‘I am just so proud of him. I have always believed in him, I just didn’t realise it was going to work out so well. I think he’s brilliant. I am glad other people do as well.’

Passionate: Matt performs his winner's single for the second time of the night after being crowned winner

Overwhelmed: Matt looked taken aback, breaking down and losing his voice during parts of his second rendition of the track as he took in the enormity of his win

Crowd support: Former X Factor finalist Stacey Solomon actually made it on screen last night as she reported live from Matt's hometown of Colchester in Essex having failed to get in shot on Saturday night's show

Such is his popularity – and the popularity of this year’s show, which has regularly pulled in audiences in excess of 17million – that he is expected to make £5million in the next year.

He is likely to earn £2million from record sales, a further £1million from recording sales, and around £2million from modelling and commercial deals.

But while he has portrayed himself as a manual worker who dreams of making it as a star, Cardle comes from what friends have described as a ‘nice, middle class family’ and attended the £15,000-a-year Stoke College boarding school.

It is understood that he only worked as a painter and decorator to fund time in the recording studio and to make an album with his old band Seven Summers.

He grew up in a £500,000, four-bedroom detached redbrick home in the village of Little Maplestead, Essex, and his parents own a ­logistics ­consultancy firm called Frazer-Nash Associates.

What a diva: Rebecca performed the Eighties hit by the Eurythmics, Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)

Gracious: She was clad in a gold dress before wearing an intricate orange gown later in the show and became emotional as mentor Cheryl and the rest of the judges told her how proud they were of her

But his father, a former chorister, says music is in the genes – and Cardle is certainly a fighter, having had a kidney removed after suffering from cancer at the age of two.

He went on to quit school at 16 and attend a £500-a-week summer drama college, where he formed a band called Darwyn. He was the main songwriter in the group, which lasted for two years.

From there he joined alternative rock band Seven Summers, and released an album shortly before he auditioned for The X Factor.

Elegant: Rebecca performed a cover of Duffy's Distant Dreamer, which would have been the track she released if she had won the contest

WAG on the scene: Coleen Rooney reported live from a crowd-strewn street in Liverpool, Rebecca's homeland

Viewers will have noticed subtle changes to his style as the competition progressed – he now regularly has a spray tan, has had his hair styled and his teeth whitened.

Since the live shows began two months ago, fans have been won over by his good looks and impressive voice, but his honesty has also won him admirers in a year when the show has been dogged by rumours that results have been fixed or leaked.

Cardle famously criticised Simon Cowell for keeping Katie Waissel in the show because she was good for ratings, and hit out at former rival Wagner Carrihlo for his lack of talent.

Absolutely gutted: One Direction were the first of last night's X Factor finalists to get the boot with Cowell saying he was 'gutted for them' but adding 'this is not the end'

We're through: Matt and Rebecca react with shock as they are told they are in the final two

But he found himself at the centre of a fresh phone controversy last night after some callers who had been trying to vote for Miss Ferguson claimed to have received automated messages thanking them for voting for him.

A spokesman said no complaints had been made and no problems had been reported to them.

There were also concerns the voting was being leaked early after a poll put out on Twitter put Cardle in first place, ahead of Miss Ferguson, with One Direction third.

Big future ahead of them: One Direction's performed Natalie Imbruglia's Torn to huge cheers from the crowd

Keeping their fingers crossed: Corrie star Michelle Keegan reported live from Louis Tomlinson's hometown of Doncaster

Last night’s grand finale, which saw Take That make a return to the show to perform their hit Never Forget with the three finalists, is expected to have garnered ITV’s biggest audience of the year.

Cardle delivered a rendition of Katy Perry’s Fireworks – which Simon Cowell hailed as one of his best performances yet. Miss Ferguson was also told that she had ‘one heck of a recording voice’ by Cowell after her performance of Eurythmics’ classic Sweet Dreams.

Nice trousers: Matt's first song of the night was Katy Perry's Firework, which he received high praise from the judges for, although Simon was not a fan of his neon trousers

Explosive: The performance was punctuated with a colourful lights show and explosions

The mother of two, who has studied to be a legal secretary to give her young children a better start in life, was commended as a ‘wonderful role model’ and Louis Walsh said she was living proof that ‘nice people could do well’.

Coleen Rooney was drafted in to talk to fans back in Liverpool about Miss Ferguson’s performance, while former contestant Stacey Solomon was representing Cardle’s fans in Essex.

One Direction sang Torn, first made famous by Natalie Imbruglia, prompting the judges to insist that regardless of whether they won the competition they would get a recording deal. Cowell insisted: ‘This is just the beginning for these boys’.

Crowd pleaser: To open the show the three finalists performed with Take That as they sang Never Forget ensemble

Back For Good: The band later performed The Flood to rapturous applaus from the audience, with Jason backing Rebecca to win and Gary batting for Matt

Band member Zain Malik said: ‘We are going to stay together and this is not the last you have seen of One Direction.’

All of the top five acts in the competition – Cardle, Miss Ferguson, One Direction, Cher Lloyd and Mary Byrne – will be handed recording deals.

Let the battle commence: The X Factor judges arrive on to the stage at the start of the final

The last stand: Cheryl looked stunning in a red fishtail gown while Dannii opted for a plunging, glittering off-white dress

A source close to Cowell said he felt all of them had potential to be very successful and would appeal to different demographics.

The source said: ‘This is the biggest shop window in Britain. We are looking at potentially five millionaires. This series has been the most popular and everyone who is left has huge followings. They all have their own appeal and quite separate fan bases.’

Former Tesco cashier Miss Byrne, 51, is set to make more than a £1million and will work with Louis Walsh on a record featuring soul songs and West End favourites.

Ensemble: Some of the most colourful and controversial contestants from the series performed a group rendition of Lady Gaga's bad romance, escort girl Chloe Mafia seen centre in a revealing outfit

Hoping for Christmas No.1: Matt at the start of the night after performing his first song of the evening


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