Simon Le Bon has ''great sympathy'' for One Direction.

The Duran Duran star says the British boy band, which features members Harry Styles, Niall Horan, Louis Tomlinson and Liam Payne, must be under ''huge pressure'' to maintain their success because he thinks they are ''a cash cow for so many people.''

The 56-year-old star said: ''They are a cash cow for so many people. There's a huge pressure to never take a break.''

Simon feels particularly protective of Harry, 21, because he ''seems to be a decent chap.''

But he added: ''That makes me think he is handling it all very well.''

Meanwhile, the 'Ordinary World' hitmaker claims nobody thought Duran Duran would last because people believed they were manufactured.

He told ''We were the last band people thought would carry on. They thought we were a flash in the pan, contrived, probably put together by management.''

The 'Hungry Like The Wolf' hitmakers are gearing up to release their new album, 'Paper Gods,' in September, which features collaborations from artists including Mark Ronson, Janelle Monae, as well as Lindsay Lohan.

Simon decided to approach the 'Mean Girls' actress to appear on a track after getting to know her a decade ago when she approached him to say she had once gone to a costume party dressed up as him.