aj pritchard lauren steadman strictly

Are AJ Pritchard and Lauren Steadman more than friends? See what the Strictly star has said

The Strictly pro appears to have swept Lauren off her feet!

Sharnaz Shahid

AJ Pritchard has surprised Strictly Come Dancing fans by revealing he has "feelings" for his celebrity dance partner Lauren Steadman. The professional dancer, who was linked to Mollie King during last year's series, hinted that he and the Paralympian could have a romantic future together once Strictly ends. "I am very protective of Lauren because we have worked so close together," he told The Mirror, before adding: "It's for that reason that we have grown so close together and we will be friends for life and who knows in the future... You never know what is going to happen."

AJ Pritchard and Lauren Steadman have grown close in recent weeks

Week after week, the pair have been impressing the judges and viewers at home with their sensational dance performances - they even secured their first nines last week. Pro dancer AJ was recently left red-faced when It Takes Two host Zoe Ball asked if he could 'relate' to the song he and Lauren were planning to dance to - Girlfriend by Avril Lavigne. "Yes, no, no, yes… I don't know," he said, while Zoe asked Lauren: "Have you had talks about him and his girlfriends at all?" to which the sports star replied: "Well, we did ask. I was like, 'So, have you had a girlfriend AJ?' He was like, 'No.'" AJ agreed, saying: "No, no. No girlfriends, no."

MORE: Is Strictly Come Dancing's AJ Pritchard in a relationship?

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Last year, there was much speculation around AJ's close friendship with Mollie where the pair reached the semi- finals. Ex pro Brendan Cole was among those who hinted that the pair were a couple, telling his All Night Long tour audience: "One evening I went in the boys' changing room, walked in the door and there was AJ and Mollie. I wouldn't have thought anything of it if they had gone, 'Hey Brendan, nice to see you.' But as I walked in the door, they went, 'Sorry, sorry! Didn't see you there.' Two young single people who get together on the show – it's great, right?"

READ: The surprising reason why Stacey Dooley agreed to do Strictly

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