Like a man sobbing as he throws kittens down the well, Louis Walsh regrets having to let Shayne Ward go:
"I thought Shayne had the X factor," Walsh told the Daily Mail. "I thought he ticked every single box. He had the looks, the talent, the ability, the attitude and the ambition. I believed in him 100%.Yes, what could Louis do? He believed so wholeheartedly in Shayne, and yet there was no single. It's not like Louis was Ward's manager or anything, was it? He wasn't the man responsible for Ward's career and the person whose job it was to ensure the record got released, right?
"I gave blood, sweat and tears in working with him - I absolutely did. Then there was no record, it all dried up."
He continued: "There was nothing I could do at all. My hands were tied. I only wish him the best because I think he's a great guy. But I reluctantly had to let him go."
Still, Ward is still notionally signed to Syco, and has a new manager, Alan Edwards:
"I'm not surprised that Simon has not dropped Shayne because he really is a great singer," Edwards told the paper. "When he offered to play me some of his new tracks, he blew me away.Brilliant - Shayne's now got a manager who believes he has the X Factor, and who is convinced that he has the talent to succeed. Again. What could go wrong? This time?
"I presumed it would be formulaic music, but it was very free feeling. I know Shayne's fans have missed him but music is art - it can't be rushed. I think that a bit of time between now and his last album could be an advantage - it puts a bit of distance between him and the show."