X Factor favourite Joe McElderry has said he is worried about flopping in Saturday’s final – despite being the hot favourite to win the series.

Bookmakers Paddy Power are currently offering odds of 2-5 on the 18-year-old taking the title, ahead of Olly at 4-1 and Stacey at 5-1.

And a poll conducted by The Sun saw a massive 43 per cent of its readers backing Joe to win. By comparison 20 per cent favoured Olly while 17 per cent thought Stacey would be champion.

However Joe has confessed that he is terrified he may lose the final because his fans think he has already won – meaning they will not bother to vote for him.

“Joe is really worried that it won’t go his way,” a friend of his told the paper. “He’s refusing to think it’s in the bag even though everyone else – including Simon Cowell – thinks it is.

“He thinks by being the frontrunner many viewers who want him to win won’t bother picking up the phone,” the source added. “He’s bricking it – it’s really got to him. His mentor Cheryl Cole has had to speak to him to try and keep his focus.”

Saturday’s final will see Joe performing a duet with George Michael, singing his classic hit Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me.

The teenager won a standing ovation from the judges when he performed the song on a previous show.

Olly is set to duet with Robbie Williams while Stacey Solomon will perform a song with jazz crooner Michael Buble.

Stacey is the bookies’ favourite to be voted off Saturday’s show – leaving the two remaining performers to bid for the series title on Sunday’s programme.