Saara Aalto is determined to become the first pop superstar from Finland.

The 29-year-old singer won over the British public with her huge voice and eccentric performances when she competed on the last series of 'The X Factor', eventually finishing as runner-up to Matt Terry.

Saara first shot to fame on the Nordic version of 'The Voice' in 2012, again finishing in second place on that talent show, and she can recall that when she told people she wanted to crack the charts all over the world she was scoffed at due to her nationality but now she is ready to prove her critics wrong with her debut album.

In an interview with the Metro newspaper, Saara - who has signed a five-album deal with Sony Music UK - said: ''Whenever I told people I wanted to be an international singer they were always like, 'You are from Finland, you can do it.' Label guys told me, 'You can never be as good as international artists.' I said, 'That's not true, I can be as good as I want to be.' ''

Recalling her disappointment at failing to secure a recording contract after her success on 'The Voice', she added: ''I still wasn't signed because the labels were like, 'Well, you want to sing in English so we won't sign you.' I was like, 'Fine! Then I'll have to do it on my own.' In Finland you have to do music in Finnish.''

Saara is so determined to reach the top that she's made her career her number one priority this year and has put her plans to wed her long-time girlfriend and manager Meri Sopanen on hold.

She explained: ''We're going to wait because we definitely want the time to plan everything. Right now, it's not the biggest priority. We're happy to be engaged.''