The Christmas number one used to be the most coveted position of the year. That is, until the X Factor hit our screens.
Since then, number ones have been dominated by reality show winners. The show's champs got to the spot from 2005 to 2008, until in 2009, in anger against the success of X Factor, thousands supported the campaign to get Rage Against The Machine's "Killing in the Name" to the number one spot - which it did, 17 years after the song's original release.
X Factor winner Matt Cardle managed to steal the spot back in 2010, with the Military Wives getting the top position last year.
Other big festive hitters include The Spice Girls who managed to get three Christmas number ones in a row with "2 Become 1", "Too Much" and "Goodbye" from 96-98. The Beatles also managed three-in-a-row from 63-65 with "I Want to Hold Your Hand", "I Feel Fine" and "Day Tripper/We Can Work It Out", and another in 1967 with "Hello, Goodbye". Our national treasure Cliff Richard has also had three Christmas number ones.
This year, X Factor winner James Arthur is the second favourite to land this year’s Christmas number one according to Ladbrokes, with odds of 7/2 as he's been announced as having the fastest-selling X Factor single. The Justice Collective (Hillsborough Charity Single) are reportedly most likely to get the top spot with currently the best odds.
After auditioning for the show, the One Pound Fish man (£1 Fish Man) Muhammad Shahid Nazir is also set to take on the ITV giants with his new re-vamped single (see above). He's got odds of 33/1 at the moment, and William Hill spokesman Rupert Adams said:
“To put that in perspective, he is twice as likely as Justin Bieber to take the top spot and four times as likely as Sir Cliff Richard.”
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