Our X Factor pundit thinks we could be heading for the mother of all sing-offs this weekend.
X Factor producers are within range of creating the mother of all sing-offs this weekend - or should that be the partnered couple of all sing-offs. Two of the remaining six contestants in the competition, Ryan Lawrie and Emily Middlemas, have been seeing each other for almost a year. As they make their way to and from rehearsals, they are inseparable. They may find themselves inseparable in the bottom two this weekend. The drama would be TV gold that's just too tempting for producers.
For many weeks, such an outcome looked unlikely. Emily was flying high, especially with her standout week 4 performance of 'Creep', whilst Ryan struggled at the other end of the competition, saved three weeks running by the Sunday lifeline vote to rescue one of the bottom three. That gimmick was dropped last week, leaving Ryan in the sing-off instead. There he beat Sam Lavery on deadlock, thanks to a last-second change of mind from Sharon Osbourne.
With no lifeline this week, Ryan is a hot favourite to find himself in the bottom two again. According to bookmakers' odds, Saara Aalto is the most likely to join him there. But Saara was treated like the Second Coming last week, whilst Emily was given surprisingly harsh treatment. A repeat of that this week could give producers their most dramatic sing-off ever. Imagine the tears as the young lovebirds realise that safety for one means elimination for the other.
In the circumstances, the prospect must be on producers' minds as the headline-grabber and ratings-booster the series needs. You can get 7/2 on the prospect with Skybet. If such a sing-off comes to pass, there's the nuclear option of Emily being the one eliminated. However, my guess is that, having fulfilled his purpose on the live shows, Ryan would leave. He is an odds-on favourite to do so.
In the outright, Matt Terry just remains an odds-on favourite after another adequate week. 5 After Midnight continue to be given every help by producers, and have now come into 9/2 second favourites. Controversial novelty act Honey G was briefly second favourite after her big production at the weekend. However, news that the winners' single is an Ed Sheeran-written acoustic ballad, has seen her drift out a little during the week to her current best price of 7/1.
Emily is 13/2 for the win, which may lengthen if she is saved from the bottom two this weekend. It's worth remembering that James Arthur survived a sing-off at the same stage before going onto victory in 2012. But I'm betting it's going to be a bumpy road for the Scottish lass this weekend.100% Bonus Up to £200