Cheryl and Nicole Scherzinger could battle it out to be on The X Factor next year.
It had been claimed that Cheryl was being lined up for what would be her third stint behind the judges’ desk in 2018.
Cheryl first joined the show in 2008 before leaving in 2011 for the American version. The new mum then returned in 2014 before departing again last year.
A source told The Sun newspaper last weekend that Cheryl was already in talks to sign a £1.5 million deal.
“It looks like Cheryl will be back next year. Simon knows Nicole is likely to leave and he wants a big name, and some much-needed glamour on the panel,” the insider explained. “He knows he will get that with Cheryl and she would be a really popular signing and a huge hit.”
The source added: “They have had several meetings about it and Simon has had his top people on the case to make sure it is all sorted.”
Louis Walsh previously claimed that both he and Sharon Osbourne had already signed up to return next series.
Nicole Scherzinger had hinted she was going to quit – but has now seemingly changed her tune.
“I would love to come back if you would have me,” she told Jonathan Ross (via the Daily Star). “Simon…they have asked me back so hopefully everything will work out.”
And Nicole added she put effort in when she was a mentor, saying: “People don’t realise that when I come over here I don’t fly back and forth to my home in LA. I stay and when I commit to The X Factor I put 1,000% into it.”
A source told the tabloid: “Everyone is focusing on this series of The X Factor with no decisions being made for the 2018 panel until next year.”
A spokesperson declined to comment on the speculation.
For now, The X Factor 2017 live shows continue Saturday at 8:10PM and Sunday at 7:30PM on ITV.
It’s the third weekend of live shows and guest performers include One Direction’s Harry Styles and Paloma Faith.
The weekend’s first live show begins at 8:10PM on Saturday night.