Louis Walsh has defended his rant at Cheryl Cole on Saturday night’s first live X Factor.

Louis tore into Cheryl after she criticised him for not giving finalist Katie Waissel, 24, “a chance”.

More than 13 million viewers watched as he snapped back: “I have an opinion – it’s not all about you, Cheryl!”

But Irish Louis stood by his angry outburst, telling The Mirror: “I’m 30 years in the business, I’ve seen and done it all and I’m not going to be told anything by anybody.

“I was defending myself and my acts. I speak my mind.”

And in what seemed to be a further dig at Girls Aloud star Cheryl, he added: “I’m not shallow – I’m not like anybody else on the show.”

Louis’ attack topped off an already tough week for Cheryl, who was heavily criticised for putting Katie through to the live shows over Zimbabwe-born singer Gamu Nhengu.

But the show was plunged into fresh controversy on Sunday night when the judges opted to save Katie over popular boyband FYD.

Outraged fans immediately branded the decision ‘a fix’.

One said: “It was all set up beforehand. They wanted to keep Katie on the show.”

Italian student Nicolo Festa also got the boot after receiving the least number of public votes, telling host Dermot: “I feel c**p”.