James Jordan and Ben Shephard on This Morning and Giovanni Pernice smiling in Strictly promo pic

Strictly star James Jordan insists he’s not ‘bad-mouthing’ Giovanni Pernice on This Morning following show exit

Giovanni won't be back for the 2024 series of Strictly

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The news that Giovanni Pernice won’t return to Strictly for the 2024 series sparked a discussion on This Morning today.

On Monday, the BBC announced the 2024 Strictly pro dancer line-up. After recent allegations about Giovanni’s training methods on the show, he won’t return for the upcoming series.

On Tuesday’s This Morning, some Strictly stars appeared on the show to discuss the news.

Cat Deeley and Ben Shephard talking to James and Ola Jordan on This Morning
James offered his opinion on Giovanni Pernice’s exit from Strictly amid allegations (Credit: ITV)

Giovanni Pernice exits Strictly

Hosts Ben Shephard and Cat Deeley welcomed former Strictly pros James and Ola Jordan onto the show via video call.

Calling Giovanni’s exit “sad”, James said: “Strictly is a family entertainment show, everyone loves it.

“The only thing I will say is that there’s no smoke without fire. And I’ve always protected the professional dancers. We don’t know the ins and outs of it.

“Whether or not Giovanni has decided not to come back, or the BBC have asked him not to come back, I’d be curious to see what the answer to that is. But I feel the BBC have dealt with it pretty well – and there’s no smoke without fire.”

Giovanni Pernice smiling in Strictly promo pic
Giovanni won’t return to Strictly this year (Credit: BBC)

James Jordan on Giovanni news

James then went on: “I’d be devastated if one of my previous celebrity partners came forward saying that I was abusive or not treating them nice in training. But he’s had four.

“If it was just one, you’d say okay maybe a massive clash in characters.”

For him to have four people come forward, there’s clearly something there.

The dancer said as a pro dancer you have to “adapt” training to the celebrity as some feel more “self-conscious” than others.

He added: “For him to have four people come forward, there’s clearly something there…”

Ben then cut in, saying: “No, no, we need to be clear James. There’s allegations he has vehemently denied.”

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James Jordan on This Morning today

Ben then read out Giovanni’s previous statement, which said: “You will be as surprised as I am that allegations have been made about my dance teaching methods in the media this week.

“Of course, I reject any suggestion of abusive or threatening behaviour, and I look forward to clearing my name.”

James added: “But have four people come forward with these allegations? It’s not just one person, it’s four people.”

Ben replied: “That’s what’s been reported,” to which James said: “Only what’s been reported okay. So I can only go on what’s been reported.

James Jordan and Ola Jordan on This Morning today
James and Ola Jordan discussed the Strictly news on This Morning today (Credit: ITV)

“I’m not bad-mouthing Giovanni and none of us, clearly, know enough about it so we’ve been asked to come on here and discuss it. I can only discuss what I’ve read in the papers the same as you.

“That is four people have come forward with these allegations. If that is the case then you have to sit up and look at it.”

James added: “And isn’t the proof in the pudding a little bit, he’s not back on the show. So clearly, whether or not he has decided [not] to come back or the BBC has not asked him back, there’s something going on which we don’t know about.”

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Read more: Debbie McGee expresses ‘heartbreak’ for Giovanni Pernice amid Strictly axe

This Morning airs weekdays from 10am on ITV1 and ITVX. Strictly will return this autumn on BBC One.

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Rebecca Carter
Associate Editor (News)