I'm too shy to ask Bernard out on date -- Layla

SHE has admitted to having a soft spot for Dublin footballer Bernard Brogan (inset), but reality star Layla Flaherty would be "far too shy" to approach the newly single Blues hero.

The Galway native, who is gearing up for TV3's latest instalment of Celebrity Salon, revealed to the Diary that she'd never be able to work up the courage to chat up with Irish sporting hunk.

And Layla said she wouldn't dare ask her new co-star Eamonn Fennell, who has also signed up to the Ballymount series, to set her up with the All-Star.

"I'd be way to shy to approach him or anything ... There have been situations before where friends have tried to set me up, but I'm always like, 'oh no, please don't'. I'm such a wimp when it comes to things like that. I'd rather just bump into someone and be like, 'Oh hi'."

The chatty brunette, who has been single since the end of Desperate Scousewives earlier this year, definitely "wouldn't say no" to an Irish man, but thinks they fall down in the style stakes.

The brunette beauty has just returned from an exotic bootcamp in Ibiza and is celebrating her birthday with a string of parties in the UK.

She hosted a bash in trendy nightclub Aura in Mayfair last night and is keeping the festivities going by having another shindig in Liverpool over the weekend.

"I won't be able to move next week," she laughed.

Although she's toasting her big day in London and Liverpool, none of Layla's family or pals from home are heading over.

"I think they're just going to wait for the bigger birthday next year to be honest. I can't blame them."

And she can't wait to return to Irish shores to meet up with her new Celeb Salon room mates. "My mum's really into it, she's addicted to it, so she's been filling me in on what goes on." She'll go head-to-head with a host of well-known faces when filming kicks off over the summer.