British bookmakers have paid out on Band Aid 20 making this year’s UK Christmas Number One spot – five days early.
Ladbrokes closed the book on Do They Know It’s Christmas? Topping the chart when the odds reached a record 1/25.
The charity single is tipped to shift 800,000 copies by Sunday when the Christmas number one is announced, and is currently outselling the whole of the top 20 combined.
Ladbrokes spokesman Warren Lush said: “This is the first time that we have ever paid out ahead of Sunday’s charts.
“There is no way Band Aid 20 won’t remain top of the tree so we have declared it Christmas Number One five days early. All those who bet on it can collect their winnings now.
“We hope all those who have made money on it will use the cash to buy more copies.”
Ronan Keating and Cat Stevens are tipped for the number two slot with Father and Son, followed by Kylie Minogue’s I Believe.
X Factor winner Steve Brookstein’s chances of knocking Band Aid off the top of the chart are slipping.
He releases his debut single, a cover of Phil Collins’ Against All Odds, on December 20. Hopes for Steve had been high – but news that he was booed off stage during his first gig at the weekend has dented his chances.
Rupert Adams of William Hill said: “If you had asked two weeks ago, we would have said the X Factor winner was a cert to make it to number one.
“But Band Aid continues to sell very well and is sure to be a popular Christmas present. Steve’s first performance was booed off and, as his song title suggests, we think it’s against all odds that he will knock Band Aid off number one.”