Barlow hints at X Factor exit

Barlow hints at X Factor exit

Gary Barlow has hinted he is to leave 'The X Factor'.

The Take That judge - whose remaining act Christopher Maloney was placed third last night has been the subject of speculation that show chief Simon Cowell plans to fire him from the panel, but insists the music mogul may not get the chance.

He said: "I don't know if there is room in my diary for 'X Factor' next year, if I am honest."

Gary, 41, is also said to be concerned about the show's falling ratings and would rather return to his pop career in order to avoid risking his "integrity".

A source told the Daily Star on Sunday newspaper: "Gary has enjoyed his two years on the show but privately he's made it clear he won't be returning for a third series.

"He's concerned by the falling ratings and is worried he's losing his integrity on the show. He wants to get back to basics and concentrate on what he loves doing, which is making music.

"Gary also feels drained by how intensive and all-consuming the show is. He knows next year will be a big year for Take That and also him personally and he wants to free time to balance his career and his family life.

"Something has to give and that thing will be 'X Factor'."

Yesterday, Gary admitted he and Simon, 53, haven't spoken since February but the 'Greatest Day' hitmaker doesn't think this means there is a problem with his work on the show.

Speaking at a press conference ahead of the final, he said: "I don't hear from Simon. I met him in February to talk about the next series. It was the same as last year - once we go on telly I don't hear anything.

"I'm assuming if I was doing anything wrong I'd be hearing plenty more. I don't need to speak to anyone during the series. I know what my job is and what I need to do.

"It's clearly all my fault. I'll take it all on the chin. If you want someone to blame, blame me."

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