Simon Cowell agreed to Take That musician Barlow's return in order to get ITV bosses to consent to Walsh's tenth series at the judges' table, according to The Sun.
Cowell was reportedly less keen for Barlow's return than the channel were, with a source close to Walsh claiming that the music mogul was "desperate" to keep the former Girls Aloud manager on the show.
"[Louis has] been told by the heads of entertainment at ITV that he's coming back and (executive producer) Richard Holloway has also said he'll be back," the insider said.
"Obviously [Louis] wants to see the contract in his hand, but everyone who has the power to make a decision on it has said he's coming back, so if that changes something very odd has gone on.
"Normally it's Simon who upsets »
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