Simon Cowell has netted one of the world of pop's biggest names to appear on this year's The X Factor – Britney Spears.

The pop princess has had a troubled couple of years but is now attempting to mount a comeback with a new album and world tour.

After rumours swirled around in the last week The X Factor website confirmed the story today, describing it modestly as the "coup of the century".

"Yes, I think Britney Spears is going to perform on The X Factor," Cowell said.

"We're absolutely thrilled to have her. She's a hugely talented person; everyone wants to work with her because she’s a star."

This year's X Factor is gearing up for the live shows which are now only days away.

A double-header this weekend will see those who got through the first round of auditions vie for the attentions of the four judges to see who will be selected for the live shows.

Those who are successful can look forward to the chance of spending some quality time with Britney herself – so long as they don't push her over The Edge.

Cowell added: "The fact that she goes a bit crazy occasionally makes her more interesting. If she wants to shave her head before she comes on the show, she's welcome to, I don't care!"

26/09/2008 16:29:06