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Sheeran leads nominations for Brits


Ed Sheeran is set to perform at this year's Brit Awards

Ed Sheeran is set to perform at this year's Brit Awards

Ed Sheeran is set to perform at this year's Brit Awards

Ed Sheeran heads the field for this year's Brit Awards with four nominations.

The 20-year-old star - who has three top five hits to his name - tops the shortlist ahead of Adele and Jessie J, both up for three prizes.

Florence + The Machine and Coldplay are each up for a pair of prizes at the event, to be held at London's O2 Arena on February 21.

Emeli Sande has already won the Critics' Choice Award ahead of this year's show, and stands to win another as best British breakthrough act, competing against Jessie J, Ed, Anna Calvi and The Vaccines.

Ed goes up against Noel Gallagher, James Blake, James Morrison and Professor Green for the best British male title and is one of ten acts in contention for best British single.

Best British album - which has now become the centrepiece of the Brits - will be fought over between Ed's +, 21 by Adele, Mylo Xyloto by Coldplay, Ceremonials by Florence and the Mercury Prize-winning Let England Shake by PJ Harvey.

The best British female category features Adele, Florence, Jessie J, Laura Marling and Kate Bush.

Coldplay are up for the best British group title - a category they have previously won three times - and face Elbow, Kasabian, Arctic Monkeys and Chase & Status.

Other acts with two nominations are Bon Iver and Aloe Blacc, who both figure in the international categories.

The awards - officially called the The Brit Awards 2012 with MasterCard - will also feature performances from Adele, Bruno Mars, Coldplay, Sheeran, Florence, Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds and Rihanna. Blur have already been named the winners of the Outstanding Contribution to Music award for this year.