08/12/2012 06:43 GMT

'Fake Friends' Drafted In For Chris Maloney

chirs maloney

Chris Maloney has had his fair share of problems to deal with during his stint on The X Factor, and now apparently he has to face up to not having enough friends for the show.

Chris made his homecoming visit to Liverpool earlier this week to give mentor Gary Barlow a tour of the city and to perform a special concert, but producers on the show were concerned that not enough people had turned up and were forced to draft in more fans.

As Chris arrived in the city by ferry, passers-by were given banners by the show's staff to hold up. The same banners were then seen later on in the day when Chris took Gary to visit his grandmother at her home.

Extra support also had to be called in at the call centre where Chris works, with members of staff drafted in from different departments.

One employee told the Mirror: "I don't actually work in here. I was just told to come down and fill up the office because there weren't many people apparently. They just said, come down and watch – and I might be on the telly. I don't really know Chris to be honest, I'm sure he's a nice lad but I can't really pretend to know anything about him."

Despite receiving criticism throughout the show from the judges and the audience alike, Chris will take part in tomorrow's final in Manchester alongside Jahmene and favourite James Arthur.

It is the third consecutive year there has been a finalist from the city, but both Rebecca Ferguson and Marcus Collins were pipped to the post.