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One Direction. Zane on the far right.
One Direction. Zane on the far right.
One Direction. Zane on the far right.

For fans of One Direction, this may not come as the biggest of surprises, but after a few weeks of uncertainty, the band have officially announced that Zayn Malik has left, leaving them to finish their world tour as a four-piece.

In a message to their Facebook fans, Zane said: “My life with One Direction has been more than I could ever have imagined. But, after five years, I feel like it is now the right time for me to leave the band. I’d like to apologise to the fans if I’ve let anyone down, but I have to do what feels right in my heart.

“I am leaving because I want to be a normal 22-year-old who is able to relax and have some private time out of the spotlight. I know I have four friends for life in Louis, Liam, Harry and Niall. I know they will continue to be the best band in the world.”

To which the band added: “We’re really sad to see Zayn go, but we totally
respect his decision and send him all our love for the future. The past five years have been beyond amazing, we’ve gone through so much together, so we will always be friends. The four of us will now continue. We’re looking forward to recording the new album and seeing all the fans on the next stage of the world tour.”

Simon Cowell, who put the band together on The X Factor in 2010 and whose record and management company is responsible for the band’s global success said: “I would like to say thank you to Zayn for everything he has done for One Direction. Since I first met Zayn in 2010, I have grown very, very fond – and immensely proud – of him. I have seen him grow in confidence and I am truly sorry to see him leave. As for One Direction, fans can rest assured that Niall, Liam, Harry and Louis are hugely excited about the future of the band.”

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By Fraser McAlpine