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Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby respond to 'rift' rumours

holly phil itv this morning

Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby have responded to tabloid reports of a rift.

The hosts of This Morning and Dancing On Ice have dismissed claims that the relationship between them is 'strained'.

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Phil said: "We have such a laugh. We're best mates, she's like the sister I never had. I just adore working with her, she's just perfect."

Speaking to BBC's Newsbeat, Holly said: "You couldn't do the amount of hours of TV that we do with each other without getting on."

She added: “Phil has been a mentor and a friend. To do that amount of live telly you do have to think in the same way. You morph into this one presenter.”

The pair have also been supported by ITV and colleagues on This Morning.

The show's editor Martin Frizell said: "I spend hundreds of days a year in their company and what you see is what you get, a genuine friendship from a couple who are both spontaneously funny and professional.

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"We have the smartest viewers watching telly and believe me they would be the first to notice any issues – they haven’t because there are none."

Meanwhile a spokeswoman for ITV said of the rumours: “It’s deeply disappointing and unfair for Phillip to be the target of this sort of malicious gossip.

“Phillip is a much respected broadcaster and colleague and this is absolutely not a description of This Morning that we recognise.

“Holly and Phil are great friends both on and off screen and are popular among viewers and colleagues alike.”

Earlier this year Phil hit out at "hurtful" and "wildly untrue" stories in the papers.

"The end of another really sad weekend," he wrote on Twitter in June. "When you try for 35 years to be the easiest, most fun person to work with and you read such hurtful and wildly untrue stories from nameless 'sources'.

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"Obviously I'll take it on the chin.. I just hope you know me better."

This Morning airs weekdays on ITV.