LOVED-up Maura Higgins has admitted to pals she is “dreading” seeing who her new boyfriend Giovanni Pernice is paired with on Strictly.
The Love Island star, 30, has been dating the Italian lothario, also 30, for weeks and the pair are set to enjoy their first holiday together next month.
But Maura also has half an eye on when Strictly Come Dancing returns in the autumn.
A pal said: “Maura hasn't had to deal with the whole Strictly unveiling and all the whispering and talk about the Strictly curse.
"She's dreading it a little bit but, at the same time, her and Gio are rock solid and they are really, really happy.
"Maura knows dating a sexy male Strictly dancer comes with one down-side – and that is having to see him perform with another woman but it will take a bit of getting used to.
"One thing is for sure though Maura plans to be there supporting Gio when the shows kick off."
She's dreading it a little bit but, at the same time, her and Gio are rock solid,"
The Sun on Sunday exclusively pictured the pair together enjoying a night out in Blackpool recently.
Our snaps confirmed the pair are very much ON after weeks of speculation.
The Sun Online later told how Giovanni had been eyeing up Maura for a long time.
A pal told us: “They’ve met each other at events in the past and Giovanni has always fancied Maura.
“But it wasn’t until she became single that he made his move. Once they started texting, and then eventually meeting up, things quickly went from there.
“Maura has spent a couple of days with Gio and been staying with him while he’s on tour.
“But she’s now had to go away with work herself so they face spending a week or two apart which neither of them are looking forward to as they’ve become close really quickly. Maura hopes to be reunited with him during the last few dates on his tour.”
Maura and Giovanni first sparked rumours they were an item after sharing very similar photos from inside Wembley Stadium last month.
They posted Instagram snaps with the same view while watching Italy vs Austria in the Euros on June 26.
She is said to be taking her romance with the Strictly Come Dancing star – who has previously dated Ashley Roberts and Georgia May Foote – “slowly” because she's “worried he could be a player”.
But our source who spotted them last week added: “Maura shouldn’t worry too much – he looked totally head over heels with her and who can blame him. She’s stunning.”
The couple were seen together for the first time in June, when they enjoyed a night out in Blackpool after Giovanni's dance show.
Maura snuggled up to her new beau after he came off stage at the Him & Me show, which also features Strictly star Anton Du Beke, 54.
An onlooker said: “They looked totally smitten with each other. They were being very touchy-feely and had a smooch on the dance floor."
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