The X Factor 2011 countdown: 3 days to go! A look back at series five...

Cheryl Cole

There's just three days to go until The X Factor 2011 kicks off, and today we continue our countdown as we look back at the past seven years of the show. Today it's series five, which saw Alexandra Burke soar to victory after failing three years earlier, mentored this time around by new judge Cheryl Cole.

And what a difference a year makes, we could barely think of three good moments from series four yesterday, but with series 5 we really didn't know where to start with out stand out clips!

The series is still, for us, the best The X Factor has seen, spawning numerous stars including Alexandra, runners up JLS and fourth placed Diana Vickers (We'll forget about Eoghan Quigg...)

Cheryl Cole joins the show

Kicking off our top moments from series 5 has to be the new judge, Cheryl Cole. The Geordie singer was a controversial choice for the show, but proved a hit with viewers.

The brunette beauty went on to become the first mentor to win the show twice in a row, but - as we all know - bowed out this year for a chance of fame on The X Factor USA.

It didn't work out, and to be honest we're quite glad Cheryl didn't return to The X Factor here in the UK, as we're not sure she ever managed to live up her first year in subsequent series.

There were many moments we could've chosen of Cheryl Cole on The X Factor 2008, but he decided to pick what she was best at: Crying!

Ruth Lorezno

Ruth Lorenzo was a huge talent on The X Factor 2008 and is still to date one of our favourite ever contestants. This sing-off performance shows just why...

Alexandra Burke and Beyonce

This still remains, for us, the best X Factor live performance ever (although Ruth's 'Purple Rain' above comes close). The final of The X Factor 2008 saw huge notes, drama and tears - and it all came from Alexandra's duet with Beyonce...

Amazing.

> The X Factor 2011 countdown: 7 days to go! A look back at series one...

> The X Factor 2011 countdown: 6 days to go! A look back at series two...

> The X Factor 2011 countdown: 5 days to go! A look back at series three...

> The X Factor 2011 countdown: 4 days to go! A look back at series four...

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