Dermot: People should "lay off" Cheryl and Tulisa X Factor comparisons

Dermot O'Leary

Dermot O'Leary has hit out at people who have been questioning whether new X Factor judge Tulisa Contostavlos can match up to her predecessor Cheryl Cole, saying that they should "lay off" such comparisons. Speaking ahead of tonight's X Factor 2011 premiere, Dermot said the there was "only one Cheryl".

“I hope people will lay off the comparisons with Cheryl because they are two different people," he told The Sun yesterday.

The hunky host explained: “There is only one Cheryl and, because Tulisa is a young girl, people should not compare her. They are very different girls, very different singers and very different personalities.

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“Tulisa has a great voice and two double platinum albums. She’s been in the industry since she was 11 but what I love about her is that she is feisty and honest. And she doesn’t have an off button.

“Just like every girl stood in front of her, she was there with a hairbrush in the mirror aged 11. That is the way I hope people see it because that is who she is.”

And The X Factor presenter for his fifth year, Dermot reckons this panel could be the best yet.

He said of Kelly Rowland: “She will really become an adopted Brit through the show. She has got ­credibility and she articulates her critique really well.

"She is like, ‘we’re here, there’s a party, let’s do it’. She wasn’t a dancer in Destiny’s Child, y’know, she was one of the main singers. Someone will try to hit a note and she will say, ‘baby girl, you need to do this’ and then she will just do it and show them how it is done and the crowd go wild. She is not showing off, she is just showing how it is done.

“What is lovely about her is she is taking it really seriously. Their ­reputations are on the line and it means a lot to them.”

The X Factor starts tonight on ITV1.

PIC: Copyright ITV/Syco/Talkback Thames

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