After previously stating that he was "done" with The X Factor, it sounds like Louis Walsh is indeed leaving the show for good. The veteran judge, who has sat on the panel for 11 years, has reportedly been dropped by head honcho Simon Cowell.
According to The Sun, Simon made the final decision and asked Louis, in person, to step down this year.
"They are close friends so Simon wanted to do this the right way," an insider said. "So Simon spoke to Louis and told him that it's 95 per cent certain that he'll be 'stood down' this year."
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Louis Walsh has been dubbed The X Factor's "great survivor" after 11 years on the show
Another source added that viewers at home were exhausted of Louis' "constant use of tired clichés and the same old jokes".
The 62-year-old first joined the singing competition in 2004 and has, over the years, become known as the show's "great survivor" following a string of judging panel shake-ups.
Last month the Kiltimagh-born star admitted on Irish television that he was ready to go back to his former day job of managing bands. Louis first rose to fame in the music industry as the manager to Johnny Logan, Boyzone and Westlife, three of Ireland's most successful pop artists in recent decades.
Just last month the Irishman said that he was "done" with The X Factor
"I think I'm done with X Factor," said Louis on The Seven O'Clock Show. "I've done 11 seasons. That's a long time on television."
"I want to go back to being a manager," he added. "That's my day job and I've neglected it for a long time because I'm away so much. At the moment, I'm working with Shane Filan – he's got a new record coming out, and I'm also working with Hometown."
Simon Cowell reportedly told his good friend Louis Walsh in person that he should step down
Louis also confessed that he thought producers would be changing the show and calling in fresh "new faces" for the judging panel, sparking speculation that Cheryl Fernandez-Versini could also be facing the axe.
The Geordie beauty was famously sacked from the US version of the show in 2011, but she made a comeback to the UK version last year after Simon asked her to return.
Previous reports have claimed that Robbie Williams could be stepping in to take Louis' seat.