Dermot O’Leary refuses to comment on Phillip Schofield exit

Alison and Dermot open Friday's edition of This Morning

Dermot O’Leary, who stepped in to co-host This Morning with Alison Hammond this week, has refused to comment on Phillip Schofield’s affair or departure from This Morning.

On Saturday, Dermot was asked by a Sky News reporter as he walked down the street about the latest claims made.

However, the ITV presenter explained he didn’t think it was “appropriate to comment”.

He said: “I don’t think it’s appropriate to comment if that’s okay.”

“Sorry, I know you’ve been waiting a long time,” Dermot apologised.

“But like I said, I don’t think it’s appropriate, especially with no knowledge, I don’t think it’s appropriate for me to comment on a story I don’t know.”

Phillip decided to step down from his role on This Morning last week, telling fans he would still present the British Soap Awards and Dancing on Ice.

ITV boss Kevin Lygo also released a statement where he explained the broadcaster would continue to work with Phillip.

However, in a sudden turn of events, Phillip has since admitted he’d lied about having an affair with a younger colleague at This Morning.

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On Friday, the 61-year-old said he had stepped away from his agency and ITV, and would no longer be presenting the British Soap Awards.

This also means Phillip will not be returning to present Dancing on Ice with Holly Willoughby.

In a statement to the Daily Mail, Phillip shared: I am deeply sorry for having lied to them and to many others about a relationship that I had with someone working on This Morning.

“I did have a consensual on-off relationship with a younger male colleague at This Morning.”

An ITV spokesperson also released a statement claiming bosses knew nothing about Phillip’s affair.

They said: “Further to our statement last night, ITV can confirm that when rumours of a relationship between Phillip Schofield and an employee of ITV first began to circulate in early 2020 ITV investigated.

“Both parties were questioned and both categorically and repeatedly denied the rumours as did Phillip’s then agency YMU.

“In addition, ITV spoke to a number of people who worked on This Morning and were not provided with and did not find, any evidence of a relationship beyond hearsay and rumour.

“Phillip’s statement yesterday reveals that he lied to people at ITV, from senior management to fellow presenters, to YMU, to the media and to others over this relationship.”

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