Cheryl Fernandez Versini and 1D’s Liam Payne ‘secretly dating’ after she calls it quits on second marriage
Cheryl Fernandez Versini and One Direction’s Liam Payne have been secretly seeing each other following the breakdown of her second marriage, it has been reported.
The X Factor judge(32) ended her 18-month marriage to French restaurateur Jean Bernard (33) in January and is said to be dating the One Direction star who is more than 10 years her junior.
On Valentine’s Day, Liam posted a photograph of a single rose to his Instagram, which was said to be dedicated to Cheryl in the wake of recent suggestions of a budding romance.
The pair both attended last week's Brit Awards, but were not pictured together.
According to The Sun, a close friend of Cheryl’s has confirmed their relationship.
“Cheryl and Liam are in a relationship. It was unexpected but they’ve both made each other incredibly happy.
“They’ve always got on well and share many of the same interests, but there was never anything romantic between them in the past.
“Their relationship developed very quickly in December after the X Factor final where One Direction gave their final performance before starting their hiatus. Liam is madly in love. This is the real deal,” the source said.
The pair share a similar tattoo of a rose. While Cheryl has the flower inked on her bum and lower back, while Liam has a similar image tattooed on his hand in early December.
Cheryl and Liam first met on the X Factor in 2010, when the boy band favourite auditioned as a solo artist on the talent show when he was 16.
The former Girls Aloud star, who was previously married to footballer Ashley Cole, filed for divorce from her second husband in January citing ‘irreconcilable differences’.
According to reports, the star did not sign a prenuptial agreement prior to marrying the Frenchman, and he could be in line to receive £8m of her £20m fortune in their divorce proceedings.
Sources revealed that the breakdown of the marriage may have been a result of Jean Bernard’s controlling behaviour.
One source told a Sunday newspaper: “She has had enough of his jealousy. He didn’t like it when she had to spend time with other men and even became jealous when she was hanging out with her dogs.
“In hindsight, it’s obvious Cheryl didn’t know JB well enough to commit to him for the rest of her life.”
Meanwhile, Cheryl’s new squeeze Liam has also been through a tough time of late, splitting with his long-term girlfriend Sophia Smith in October.
The break up was said to have deeply affected the singer, causing him to cancel the band’s Belfast show late last year.