As part of The X Factor’s biggest success story, Niall Horan was surely once the apple of Simon Cowell’s eye.
But ever since signing with Universal, it seems the Mullingar man’s relationship with his former mentor has gone downhill.
X Factor sources have told The Sun that despite having a new song out, Niall will not be asked to perform as part of this year’s series because Simon believes he lacks loyalty.
The insider said: “Niall hasn’t been invited to sing on any of the remaining live shows, despite having a big release. That’s not an oversight from the bookings team, it’s intentional.”
“Simon really thought the 1D boys would show loyalty after he mentored them on the show and made them the huge global success they are. Instead they went behind his back,” they continued.
“He’s not going to do them any favours. He knows artists love performing on the show as there are eight million viewers to promote their songs to.”
A source close to the 23-year-old singer says he is well aware of the situation with Simon but suggested that he has chosen to take the high road.
“They knew when he didn’t sign with Syco he wouldn’t be appearing on The X Factor. Everyone is totally fine.”
“He’s extremely proud and grateful for everything The X Factor did for him,” they said.
Earlier this month, the 57-year-old music mogul suggested Niall’s first solo single would have made number one if he had signed with Syco.
He then bragged that James Arthur has taken the chart’s top spot after returning to his label.
When Niall Horan decided not to sign with Simon Cowell's record label after going solo, we imagine he knew he'd be in for a few sly digs along the way.
And, unsurprisingly, Mr. Cowell did not disappoint in this department.
After hearing that our favourite Mullingar man had only reached number 9 in the UK charts with his first solo offering, This Town, the music mogul decided to twist the knife a little bit.
"He probably would have had a Number One single if he'd stayed with me." Simon remarked.
And just in case that wasn't enough to enrage Niall and his die-hard fans, Simon went one step further by reminding the public who did, in fact, nab the top spot this week.
"But you know who does have a Number One this week? James Arthur. Very pleased he's back with us with a fantastic record. Hashtag loyalty," Simon jeered.
Jeez Simon, how dya really feel?
Niall Horan just released his first solo track, This Town, last week, and it's already exploding.
The former Directioner has made history in the States by becoming the first artists the debut at number one on the Social 50 Countdown Chart.
The chart is given data that's tracked by music analytic company Next Big Sound.
Basically, it ranks the most popular artists on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Wikipedia, Tumblr and Vine… and Niall has come out on top.
I'm sure the Mullingar man will also be delighted to know that he beat his former bandmate Zayn, who went solo last year. Zayn came third on the chart when he first debuted his new music.
We're delighted for Niall!
Well this is totally out of the blue!
Niall Horan has unexpectedly released his first solo song today – and it's a good one!
Earlier this afternoon, Radio Disney tweeted and then deleted a message, writing: "Surprise! Listen to Radio Disney RIGHT NOW to hear @NiallOfficial's brand new song #ThisTown! And stay tuned to hear from Niall!"
Obviously, this sent fans into a frenzie because there has been absolutely no mention of it until today, but alas, HERE IT IS.
It's a love song, and a pretty good one at that. Be ready to fall in love with Niall Horan all over again.