What time and when is The Apprentice Final on TV this week? Plus, has Lord Sugar already given away who wins?


What time and when is The Apprentice Final on TV this week?

The Apprentice Final is on Sunday 20 December at 9.00pm, on BBC One.

One candidate will walk away with Lord Sugar's £250k investment in their business, won last year by Australian Mark Wright.

Who is in the final?

16 candidates have fallen by the wayside (one onto his own sword) leaving just two: Joseph Valente and Vana Koutsomitis.

Rough diamond Joseph Valente was always likely to be a Lord Sugar favourite and the feeling is more than mutual, as we discovered in Wednesday's interviews. It was Lord Sugar's autobiography that inspired Joseph to leave the plumbing firm he worked for, buy a van and set up for himself. With the air of the wheeler-dealer about him (though, sadly, the spiv moustache is no more), he's a chop off the old block.

Vana Koutsomitis, on the other hand, is a very different proposition. Extremely well-educated, multilingual and well-travelled, Vana comes from the other end of the spectrum to Joseph, who was expelled from his secondary school. Like Joseph, she has looked a shoo-in for the final over the last few weeks.

However, not everyone is impressed by Vana – in an exclusive interview with the Daily Telegraph, Scott Saunders, who walked away from the show in Week Nine, revealed he hoped that Vana would not win. At that stage there were still seven candidates left in the process and the former contestant put his support firmly behind Joseph.

Has Lord Sugar accidentally given away who wins the final?

Some people certainly think so. Speculation was rife on Twitter after Wednesday's episode, which showed a clip of Lord Sugar pointing his finger of fate at the winning candidate. The previous shot showed Joseph Valente sitting to Lord Sugar's left, with Vana Koutsomitis on the right. As the famous finger seems to pointing to the left, many have come to the conclusion that plumber Joseph is the victor.

Lord Sugar, unsurprisingly, has denied that this is the case.

@Lord_Sugar are you able to sort out the editing on #apprentice when you point to whos fired we know who your pointing at each time #joseph

— alan whitford (@whitford11)
December 16, 2015

What do the two finalists have to do?

Both candidates have to convince Lord Sugar that their business plan is worth the £250k investment. To do so, they must conduct market research, brand and market their businesses, and create both a digital billboard and promotional video. After all this, both will pitch their businesses in London's City Hall.

It goes without saying that it's not all plain sailing and making the adverts proves tricky. Especially when you have an actor as "talented" as Mergim Butaja to help you out. See below…

Will any former contestants be making an appearance?

Absolutely. As is traditional, several fired candidates from the series return to help the two finalists. Unsurprisingly, though disappointingly, these don't include firebrand Selina Waterman-Smith or the only candidate Lord Sugar couldn't fire, Scott Saunders.

Vana and Joseph get to select their team members one by one, like picking football sides at school. Inevitably, someone has to be picked last…

One of the finalists is praised by Karren Brady for choosing team members wisely, going for candidates with key strengths, rather than people they like. The other, suggests Brady, picked with their heart and not their head. Lord Sugar won't like such sentimental fiffle-faffle!

We won't reveal too much right now but we will share the wonderful news that Ruth Whiteley is back!

Photo: BBC

What's Vana's business idea?

Vana Koutsomitis wants to set up a dating app, similar to Tinder. Her idea, DatePlay, will combine a dating app with gaming, putting together two of the most popular pastimes for people's thumbs.

Daters will have to play a series of smartphone games in order to reveal the photos of the people they are matched with. The more games you play, the more of their image is revealed.

Excitingly, it's based on a very complicated algorithm designed by an expert with a "PHD in Desire". Blimey.

Obviously, we don't yet know if Vana has been successful but you can visit http://dateplayapp.com (not much to see at the moment), while the Twitter account @DatePlayApp has been created.

Photo: BBC

What's Joseph's business idea?

Joseph Valente has been forced into changing his business idea, after Lord Sugar shot down the idea of him expanding his business empire via a franchise model. Instead, he is looking into how he can grow his current plumbing business.

His clever wheeze is PrimeTime Plumbers and he fancies a move into renewable energies, an idea he struggles to get over to his team, especially Mergim (but then again it is Mergim, so…).

Photo: BBC

Who is the favourite to win?

As he has been for weeks, Joseph Valente is favourite to win. Bookmakers Betfair have him ahead of Vana Koutsomitis at 2/5. They currently have Vana at 15/8 to win.

It is, however, very close. On one hand Joseph seems like the archetypal Lord Sugar candidate and there's no doubt that the East End businessman has a soft spot for the London-based plumber. However, Vana is clearly a formidable businesswoman and her business plan is far clearer than Joseph's. The dating app might be a risk but that didn't stop Lord Sugar investing in Leah Totton cosmetic beauty clinic in 2013.