Maura Higgins friends warn Strictly may break her relationship with Giovanni

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As the new series of Strictly Come Dancing approaches, the celebrities and professional dancers are raring to get started with practising their routines.

Giovanni Pernice will be returning to dance on the show this year, and while Maura Higgins is supportive of her boyfriend, the Love Island star's friends have warned her that her relationship could be at risk.

The source told OK! : "Maura knows how things can be manipulated and made to look. During her time on DOI, she was accused of getting too close to her partner."

They went on to say that although Maura, 30, trusts Giovanni, also 30, she is aware of his personality on the show.

"It's tough as she trusts Giovanni but she knows he's a huge flirt and likes to make his partners feel special," the source told us. "Friends have said if there are any cracks, Strictly could break them."

It comes after reports said Giovanni could be partnered up with Katie McGlynn – who he was romantically linked to in 2017.

But the Coronation Street star has denied there was anything romantic between them.

After the reports of the bosses thinking Giovanni and Katie would be a "dream ticket", the Sinead Tinker actress, 28, has since told Maura "not to worry" and reassured her.

Katie told Maura that a man with a girlfriend is "completely off-limits" for her and she has "no time for a man" at this stage of her life.

"Giovanni is a really nice guy, but I don't really know him," she told The Sun.

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"We're on perfectly good terms, but Maura has nothing to worry about."

The soap star continued: "I would never get involved with anyone that had a girlfriend. I understand that happens, but I'd avoid that like the plague.

"If someone has a partner, they are completely off-limits. I never want to be that person.

"The amount of heartache the other person would be going through – it's just really not nice, and I'm not about that."

Katie then said that she wanted to concentrate on Strictly and was "definitely open to meeting someone" once the show came to an end.

The actress is set to appear on Strictly alongside Tom Fletcher, AJ Odudu, EastEnders star Rose Ayling-Ellis and many more stars in the latest series.

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