Simon Cowell has been revealed by the papers as a secret fan of X Factor twins John and Edward – and he plans to turn them into superstars.

The Sun reports that Cowell – who has dubbed the wildly popular finalists the “terrible twins” and has said he will “leave the country” if they win the show – has actually been plotting their future career with their mentor Louis Walsh.

According to Westlife member Shane Filan, he and his fellow bandmates were shown footage of the pair a few months ago and told by Simon and Louis that they would “be massive”.

We went with Louis to Simon’s house in LA and they took us to a room with a cinema and said, ‘We want to play you something,'” Filan told the paper.

“They played us John and Edward and Simon said, ‘They’re going to be massive.’ We were like, ‘Oh my god, they’ve gone crazy!’

“He put them through because he knew it was going to make brilliant TV. He knows they can’t sing, and I think the boys know.

“But they’re getting votes and best of luck to them. They’ll get a TV presenting career or something – they’ll be around for a while.”

Meanwhile Louis has urged viewers to get behind John and Edward – his final act in the competition – this week.

I really want the public to vote for John and Edward this week, if only to wipe the smile off Simon’s face,” he told The Sun. “I’d love to see his expression if they make the finals.”

“Let’s face it, the boys have become a phenomenon in the last four weeks. We’ve never seen this kind of reaction to an act. People come up to me every day saying how much they love them.”

Bookmakers Paddy Power have slashed the twins’ odds off winning to 12-1, although Joe McElderry is currently 3-1 favourite to take the series title, followed by Stacey Solomon and Olly Murs.

Rachel Adedeji is once again favourite to be eliminated this week, followed by teenager Lloyd Daniels.