Band Aid 30 backlash sees X Factor edge ahead in Christmas No.1 Battle

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They say that there’s no such thing as bad publicity but try telling that to Band Aid’s Bob Geldof after a week in which the likes of Emeli Sande and most notably Lily Allen have hit out at the re-release of the festive favourite “Do They Know It’s Christmas?”

Sande, whose father is Zambian, was among the first to hit out at the song and its new lyrics, which have been labelled offensive in some quarters.

Among the most contentious of the rewrites came with the line “there’s death in every tear” a lyric that many believe paints the African continent in a highly negative light.

“I apologise if the lyrics of the song have caused offence. I wish the changes had been kept but that is out of my control,” the singer said.

She then went on to suggest that perhaps a “whole new song is required.”

However it was Allen who offered up the most stinging riposte, with the “Smile” star explaining she opted against getting involved in the project because there was “something smug about it.”

“I prefer to do my charitable bit by donating actual money and not being lumped in with a bunch of people like that,” she added.

With Adele shunning any involvement in the song in favour of a private donation, the Band Aid 30 single has moved out to 11/8 with Ladbrokes to be the UK Christmas number one.

In its place has come the Simon Cowell-backed pop behemoth that is X Factor with the as-yet-unnamed winner now odds on at 8/15 to take the festive top spot.

The high-waisted-trouser-wearing wonder has been responsible for six of the last nine Christmas number ones in this country but with odd entries like Gary Jules and Rage Against the Machine claiming victory in the last decade, don’t be surprised to see an outsider emerge late on.

Take John Altman for instance, the actor – best known for playing ‘Nasty’ Nick Cotton in Eastenders  – is making a claim for the crown with an Iggy Pop cover of “Wild One” that really has to heard to be believed.

“We’re going all out to beat the X Factor winner because we’ve got a good song,” he told Digital Spy.

Yeah. Good luck with that.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Jack Beresford

Jack Beresford is a content writer with over five years of experience in writing about sport and betting, including a two-year spell with Axonn Media. Contributes articles to HereIsTheCity and Lad Bible, while previous credits include Bwin, FTB Pro, Bleacher Report and the QBE rugby. Avid follower of tennis, rugby union, motorsport and football, Jack also writes about poker for Cardspiel.com alongside Guardian journalist Dominic Wells.