The boyband and teen idol sensations — featuring Harry Styles, Liam Payne, Louis Tomlinson, and Niall Horan — are set to go their separate ways in March, according to a report in The Sun.
There is not to be a tour for the band’s fifth album and they are set to part company for a year because they want to focus on solo projects.
The band is currently touring in the US but the final leg of their On The Road Again tour is in Britain and Ireland, culminating in three nights at Sheffield’s Motorpoint Arena on October 29, 30, and 31.
All three gigs at the 13,500 capacity venue sold out weeks ago but, with the Saturday performance looking like being fans’ last chance to see the boys in a major concert, informal ticket sales are expected to move into a frenzy. Some auction sites and online exchanges are seeing tickets for the final gig priced at twice the face value, which ranged from £43.45 (€59) to £71.50 (€97).
One fan said on Twitter shortly after the news broke: “My TL (timeline) right now: ’looking for OTRA Sheffield tickets on 10/31’ ’who’s selling One Direction tickets on 10/31??’ ’I NEED TICKETS ON OCT 31st’.”
The band is also playing three shows at Dublin’s 3 Arena on October 16, 17, and 18 which are also sold out.
A 1D source told The Sun: “The guys have been together for five years, which is an incredible run for any boyband. They fully deserve to have at least a year to work on their own projects. There is absolutely no bad blood between them and they are all 100% behind the decision.
“It is definitely not a split and they fully intend to get back together at some time in the future.”
Millions of fans may still get the chance to see their heartthrobs as a string of TV spots and performances— which are already pencilled in before the end of the year — are still likely to go ahead, it was claimed.
The boys are to have a break over the festive period before getting back together to complete their promotional commitments for their record label in February, according to The Sun.
The plan had been on the cards “with or without Zayn” Malik, who left the group in March, according to an unnamed source who spoke to the tabloid. The source claimed: “Of course they would have preferred that he had stayed in the band, but they would have taken this extended hiatus even if he hadn’t left.”
It is believed the break and the decision not to tour was rubber-stamped in a meeting in London last weekend.
There is “a lot of interest” in Styles from Hollywood, Tomlinson is “very much in contention to be a judge on X Factor” next year and all of them are faced with “a massive amount of options”, according to the source.
It seems that Payne may want to fine tune his songwriting, producing, and DJ skills rather than a solo career, according to the report.
In March, the band vowed to continue as a four-piece after Malik’s shock departure, which he said was so he could live like a “normal” 22-year-old.
A flood of reports then suggested that the group were on the verge of breaking up, but Payne thanked their devoted fans who are known as “Directioners” for sticking with them and for “not thinking it’s finished”.
Malik quit after having been “signed off with stress”. It came amid reports he had cheated on his then-fiancée and Little Mix singer Perrie Edwards. The couple have since split. Malik is believed to be working on a solo album with acclaimed music producer Naughty Boy, who has worked with Emeli Sandé, Cheryl Cole, and Leona Lewis.