Zayn Malik quit One Direction. The band confirmed the news today in a series of statements.
The official One Direction Facebook page posted the announcement. Writing: “After five incredible years Zayn Malik has decided to leave One Direction. Niall, Harry, Liam and Louis will continue as a four-piece and look forward to the forthcoming concerts of their world tour and recording their fifth album, due to be released later this year.”
There were reports that Zayn cheated on his fiancee, Perrie Edwards of Little Mix, during a recent vacation. He denied the claims and sources insisted that Perrie forgave and moved on already. Soon after, additional photos surfaced and Zayn withdrew from the tour. He claimed he had become too stressed to continue. A decision that was applauded by mental health professionals. However, there were still reports that Zayn may never return to the band.
Today, he released a statement confirming just that. He quit. He explained, “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.”
He continued, “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.”
The rest of the band also released a statement: “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.”
Simon Cowell also issued a reaction to Zayn quitting One Direction: “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. As for One Direction, fans can rest assured that Niall, Liam, Harry and Louis are hugely excited about the future of the band.”