Speculation is rife that Christopher Maloney may be dropped from the line-up of the forthcoming X Factor tour after his behaviour led to him failing to join other former contestants in the second half of the final.
The Liverpudlian singer, who finished third in the competition on Saturday night, is scheduled to join fellow finalists Jahmene Douglas and James Arthur on the tour early next year, along with other acts including Union J and Ella Henderson.
However the plans were thrown into doubt after he was reportedly dropped from Sunday’s show, amid claims he had turned up to rehearsals drunk, and berated producers for giving him only one line to sing in the group performance before storming off set.
A source close to the show told Metro that while no decision had yet been reached on whether or not to drop Maloney from the tour, it would be discussed at a meeting later in the week.
Reports yesterday suggested that the 34-year-old initially became disgruntled over his small part in the group song and walked out – only to return later and tell producers he did not want to be a part of the show.
However matters were further complicated when he allegedly turned up yet again closer to show time and pleaded with producers to be included in the number – only to be turned down.
‘He showed up wanting to go on stage but they had to turn him away as they were already on stage and he had missed the dress rehearsal,’ a source told The Sun.
‘Everyone was completely fed up of his behaviour. He was abusive to the production team and other contestants. He said he was leaving and didn’t want to perform in the final.’
There were also reports that Maloney upset production staff by laughing loudly during the rehearsals – and later engaged in a furious Twitter feud with fellow finalist Carolynne Poole – in which he accused her of doing ‘anything to get a headline’.
When Poole responded by saying ‘The X Factor does ‘create monsters’ the feud escalated, with Maloney eventually calling her a ‘c***’.
He later returned to the social networking site to claim he was part of a ‘witch hunt’ and added: ‘Yes, I am being bullied big time,’ and described the latest reports as ‘a final stretch of sensational headlines’ – while returning to Twitter on Monday morning to tell his followers he was unwell.
‘Still got a really bad chest infection…still on antibiotics,’ he tweeted. ‘Love you all so much thank u 4 all yr love and support.’
While Maloney may not have been popular with his fellow finalists, it seems he was a hit with the public – if the weekly voting figures are anything to go by.
The results of the public vote – revealed last night after the final had ended – show that Maloney finished top for eight weeks in a row, until eventually being dethroned by James Arthur a fortnight before the final.
dear baloney it's time to...