Celebrity Gossip

Zayn Malik QUITS One Direction after five years… leaving Niall, Harry, Liam and Louis to continue as a four-piece

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  • Quit chart-topping boyband after five years
  • Apologised to fans in a statement released to MailOnline
  • Revealed he made the decision because he wants to be a ‘normal 22-year-old living out of the spotlight’ 
  • Harry, Louis, Liam and Niall will continue as a four-piece in his absence 
  • One Direction were formed by Simon Cowell on The X Factor in 2010
  • The group are officially the richest boyband in music history 
  • Zayn, 22, was signed off band’s On The Road tour last week due to ‘stress’ after being pictured holding hands with a blonde Essex girl in Thailand
  • Heartthrob is engaged to Little Mix singer Perrie Edwards 
  • 1D fans across the globe plunged into mourning on Twitter

 

Zayn Malik has quit One Direction after five years.

The 22-year-old singer has made the decision to bow out of the chart-topping boyband, leaving Niall Horan, Harry Styles, Liam Payne and Louis Tomlinson to continue as a four-piece.

Zayn said in a statement released to MailOnline on Wednesday afternoon: ‘My life with One Direction has been more than I could ever have imagined.

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Quit: Zayn Malik (second left) has quit One Direction after five years - abandoning band mates (from left, pictured in December 2014) Liam Payne, Harry Styles, Niall Horan and Louis Tomlinson

Quit: Zayn Malik (second left) has quit One Direction after five years – abandoning band mates (from left, pictured in December 2014) Liam Payne, Harry Styles, Niall Horan and Louis Tomlinson

‘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.’

He continued: ‘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.’

Over: Zayn, 22, announced via a statement from his management on Wednesday afternoon that he was to leave the band

Over: Zayn, 22, announced via a statement from his management on Wednesday afternoon that he was to leave the band

As Zayn quits One Direction we look at his highs and lows

Going on as a four piece: Harry, Liam, Niall and Louis have said that they will go on as a four piece (without Zayn, centre)

The Best Song Ever hitmakers will record their fifth album in Zayn’s absence and will continue with the remaining dates on the band’s forthcoming world tour.

ZAYN MALIK’S STATEMENT IN FULL

‘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.’

One Direction said in a second statement released to MailOnline: ‘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.’

Meanwhile, Simon Cowell – who masterminded One Direction from five solo artists who auditioned for The X Factor back in 2010 – thanked Zayn for his commitment to the band.

He added: ‘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.

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