Cher Lloyd demonstrated exactly why Cheryl Cole has such faith in her with a stunning performance on Saturday’s X Factor live show.
The teenager has endured a stressful week as the row about Cheryl’s decision to choose her for the live stages of the talent contest ahead of Gamu Nhengu rumbled on.
However, Cher didn’t show any signs of being under pressure as she wowed the judges with her version of Just Be Good To Me.
Louis Walsh and Dannii Minogue lavished praise on the youngster before Simon Cowell attempted to draw a line under the Gamu row.
‘Any doubts anyone had about why this one [Cheryl] picked you a couple of weeks ago have just been blown away,’ he said.
‘You are exactly what we are looking for, which is a new little star.’
An excited Cheryl described her performance as ‘amazing’, adding: ‘You’re cool, you’re current, you’re just what the competition needs.’
Cher appeared both thrilled and relieved by the comments and claimed: ‘That felt wicked, I’ve proved myself now.’
Earlier, Cheryl had moved to end the controversy about her decision not to select Gamu for the live finals.
It had been suggested the production team had ordered her not to put the youngster from Zimbabwe through because of her visa problems, but the Girls Aloud star insisted that had not been the case.
‘I was not aware of Gamu’s situation outside of the competition and I am incredibly sad for both her and her family but I have to stress that it did not have any influence over my choice,’ said Cheryl.
She added that she understood the public’s disappointment about her decision, but said viewers had only seen ‘an edited version of what the audition process actually involves’.
I knew, and everybody knew once Cheryl and her acts walk fiercely through the doors the public would instantly forget the whole Gamu deal over the past week.