Dermot O'Leary is favourite to replace Phillip Schofield on This Morning
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Dermot O'Leary is the favourite to replace Phillip Schofield on the This Morning sofa, according to a gambling site.
Schofield's departure was announced today (Saturday 20 May), with a statement from ITV saying: "After more than 20 years on the This Morning sofa, Phillip Schofield has stepped back from ITV’s flagship morning show having presented his last episode on Thursday 18 May.
"Having co-hosted the multi-award winning show for two decades, Phillip will continue to present peak time shows for ITV including next month’s The British Soap Awards and a new prime time series."
Schofield had co-hosted the multi-award winning show alongside Holly Willoughby for two decades, but it has now been confirmed that he fronted his last episode on Thursday 18 May.
The presenter said: “I have always been proud to cover fascinating stories on This Morning. But recently, This Morning itself has become the story.
“Throughout my career in TV – including the very difficult last few days – I have always done my best to be honourable and kind. I understand that ITV has decided the current situation can’t go on, and I want to do what I can to protect the show that I love.
“So I have agreed to step down from This Morning with immediate effect, in the hope that the show can move forward to a bright future. I’d like to thank everyone who has supported me – especially This Morning’s amazing viewers – and I’ll see you all for the Soap Awards next month.”
Now all eyes are turning to the matter of who will replace Schofield, with Willoughby set to continue on the show.
In an update last week, when rumours were circling that Schofield's position way be coming to an end, Gambling.com listed O'Leary as the 6.4 favourite with a 40 percent probability.
The website explained: "Dermot is no stranger to presenting This Morning, having done so every Friday alongside Alison since January 2021.
"The former X Factor presenter is currently the 6/4 favourite with specials betting sites to take on the role should Phillip depart the show, but his co-host Alison is not far behind in the betting.
"Some fans believe This Morning could well go for a double-female fronted strategy, in the same vein as Strictly Come Dancing does with Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman at the helm, should Phillip go but Holly stay."
Other male names being thrown into the hat by Gambling.com include Rylan Clark (3/1), Craig Doyle (5/1), Piers Morgan (11/2), Vernon Kay (7/1), Joel Dommett (8/1) and Eamonn Holmes (20/1).