Public wants Cowell back at X Factor

May 24, 2013, 2:19 PM GMT+0

As Sharon Osbourne gets set to return to the X Factor, a YouGov poll reveals that she is the public’s second all-time favourite judge – but still far behind Simon Cowell

Earlier this week it was announced that media personality and Rock ‘n Roll matriarch Sharon Osbourne will return to the judge’s panel for the next season of ITV’s X Factor. Sharon, who is replacing sacked X-Factor judge Tulisa, was one of the original judges when the mega-hit show first debuted, in 2004, but left six years ago.

With her on the panel will be the judges from last season, Gary Barlow, Louis Walsh and Nicole Scherzinger, but contrary to rumours (and the hopes of some fans) the show’s creator, Simon Cowell, will not be returning as a judge.

According to a YouGov poll conducted just before last season’s finale, which YouGov successfully predicted would be won by contestant James Arthur, Sharon Osbourne (at 13%) is the public’s second favourite all-time judge, ahead of Cheryl Cole at 12%. However, this is still far behind Simon, who is the all-time favourite of 39% of the public.

A follow-up question asking people which X Factor judge they would most like to see return yielded similar results, with 44% choosing Simon, while Sharon and Cheryl were tied in second place at 18%, respectively. On whether the show can survive without Simon, people are evenly split.

But while X Factor watchers might not be getting the returning judge they'd like, asked at the end of last season if they would be tuning in next year and three-quarters (73%) said they would be watching.