| 0.9°C Dublin

Brave Mary risks the wrath of Cheryl by leaping to defence of Wagner over on-air spat

X Factor star Mary Byrne has risked the wrath of judge Cheryl Cole by criticising her on-stage confrontation with Wagner.

The Ballyfermot native has jumped to the defence of the Brazilian oddball, saying that Cheryl never should have picked on him live on air.

Mary has slammed the Girls Aloud singer, saying it was unprofessional for her to wait until he was on stage to discuss the issue and refusing to chat about it backstage.

"I think she shouldn't have brought that into the show," she said.

Wagner was the subject of a verbal attack for commenting that she was "just a girl from a council estate who got lucky" earlier that week.

In spite of her latest comments, Mary insists that she gets along well with everyone on the judging panel -- even acid-tongued Simon Cowell.

"He's looking after his own act and he doesn't want to give too many of the rest of us nice things cause it will look bad for his act," she revealed.

"I have nothing personal against the judges and I think they are all doing a great job.

"They are all looking after their own acts and that's the way the show is run and there's nothing you can do about it," she added.

Chatty Mary also gave details of the highly publicised row between Wagner and One Direction last week.

"What I heard was he said something to one of the researchers and the boys jumped in and started calling him names and throwing things at him and it got nasty. I wasn't there though," she said.

"Wagner has a good heart and I think he's taken up the wrong way sometimes, sometimes he can be a bit rude."

The songstress also gave details of her burgeoning music career, which is set to soar if she wins the show or not, thanks to the legions of fans she has earned.

"I'm under contract, I think, for nearly three years to a company called Modest. If Sony do decide to sign me on, they will be in control of me as well.

"But Louis, I hope, is going to try to take some of that burden off me, I'm hoping he gets something for me back in Ireland," she said.

She took the opportunity to thank her thousands of Irish fans, who are determined to keep her in the competition as long as possible.

"I heard last week and the week before that I was fifth in the voting and that was a big drop compared to the first three weeks. This week, I think I was up high because more people picked up the phone," she said.

Meanwhile, Mary has said that she was delighted with her performance of Something last Saturday.

"I love that song, it suited me and it suited my voice so I was able to put everything into it," she said.

However, she knows she's by no means safe in the contest.

"I am definitely going to need everybody in Ireland to get behind me and I know it's awful because TV3 don't have the number up and we're hoping to get that up on screen," she continued.

"I'm so proud I'm doing this for the beautiful little country we have at home."

cmcbride@herald.ie