Simon Cowell is “desperate” to return to The X Factor in a bid to save the series, according to pop star and confidante Sinitta.

The singer, who is the mogul’s former girlfriend, told the Sunday Mirror that he sees himself as the only person who could turn around the show’s fortunes – and has been left bewildered at the early exit of Ella Henderson and the possibility of Christopher Maloney being crowned winner.

“This has been the worst series ever and Simon wants to come back,” Sinitta said.

“He has so much affection for the UK show, he is the boss and he wants to be back on UK TV.”

She added that Simon – who is currently a judge on the second series of The X Factor USA – was feeling frustrated at being so far away from the action in the UK.

“He misses the banter from the British fans, he misses the set-up and the team,” Sinitta said.

“In my view it has been the worst show yet in terms of watchability. There has been some great talent, some great singers but there is something missing.

“Simon worries about the show and there is a lot for him to worry about at the moment. The wrong people are going. He finds it frustrating. He doesn’t want the whole thing to fall apart.”

And she admitted that Simon was “stunned” when Ella left the show last week. “It was crazy and a bit of a disaster. She was so unique and had the Adele thing.”

Rylan Clark is favourite to leave the show on Sunday night, following Saturday’s double bill of Abba and Motown songs.