For a second consecutive year, the Christmas No1 Single in Ireland goes to the winner of ITV’s ‘The X Factor’: Leon Jackson romps home with ‘When You Believe’ despite the CD single not arriving in stores until Wednesday 19th. In the process he deposes last year’s winner Leona Lewis, who drops to No2 after an eight week reign at the top with ‘Bleeding Love’.
With the 2005 X Factor winner Shayne Ward dropping to No4, the Pogues & Kirsty MacColl block an ‘X Factor Top 3’, with ‘Fairytale Of New York’ climbing from No4 to No3 in its 20th Anniversary year. For a second consecutive Christmas this is the most downloaded song in Ireland, but physical sales lag well behind the X Factor trio. This is the first Christmas when singles that are available only as downloads are eligible for the Singles Chart, and as a result there are seven classic seasonal downloads in this week’s Top 40, the highest of which is Mariah Carey’s ‘All I Want For Christmas Is You’ at No10. Wham’s ‘Last Christmas’ fares well at No22, ahead of Shakin’ Stevens ‘Merry Christmas Everyone’ at No27 and Tom Waits ‘Christmas Card From A Hooker In Minneapolis’ at No28 – the beneficiary of a Facebook campaign for the No1 spot. This year sees the closest ever battle for the Christmas No1 Album slot, with just over 2,000 sales separating the Top 5 Albums. Michael Bublé ends up at the head of the pack with his third studio album ‘Call Me Irresponsible’ – a great week to claim his first ever Irish No1. His two previous studio albums ‘Michael Bublé’ and ‘It’s Time’ peaked at No8 and No5 respectively, whereas ‘Call Me Irresponsible’ debuted at No4 on its initial release back in April, dropped back and then surged up the chart on the release of a ‘Special Tour Edition’ double pack in October. The four unlucky runners-up for this year’s Christmas No1 spot are Shayne Ward ‘Breathless’ at No2, Leona Lewis ‘Spirit’ at No3, Westlife ‘Back Home’ at No4 and finally Garth Brooks ‘The Ultimate Hits’ at No5.