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James Arthur ‘messages The Circle winner Natalya Platanova asking if she’s “still single”‘

James Arthur ‘sends flirty messages to The Circle winner Natalya Platanova asking if she’s “still single”‘ after rekindling romance with ex Jessica Grist

The Circle winner Natalya Platanova has claimed James Arthur slid into her DMs to ask if she was ‘still single’ – after the hunk recently rekindled his romance with Jessica Grist.

Natalya – who appeared on the Channel 4 show in 2021 – took to social media to share a screenshot of purported messages the former X Factor winner had sent her on Instagram.

In the screenshot James, 33, can be seen messaging that he ‘wishes we could go on a date’ before writing: ‘Hey, still taken?’. 

Trouble: James Arthur has reportedly slid into Natalya Platanova’s DM’s after he recently rekindled his romance with Jessica Grist (pictured) 

Army corporal Natalya, who has a boyfriend – cheekily replied: ‘Yup, can we feature as the next cute couple in a music vid?’  

The screenshot also shows that James has been allegedly pursuing Natalya  for almost a year, and branded her ‘combat Barbie’ in another message.

A source told The Sun said: ‘Natalya was flattered by James’ interest in her but hasn’t tried to pursue a relationship, as she is already in one and focused on training and mental health campaigning, which she is passionate about.’ 

Uh-oh: The singer, 33, could be seen sending flirty messages to Natalya despite getting back together with his on/off dancer girlfriend

Uh-oh: The singer, 33, could be seen sending flirty messages to Natalya despite getting back together with his on/off dancer girlfriend

Cheeky: The Circle winner Natalya - who appeared on the Channel 4 show in 2021 - shared a screenshot which showed several messages the former X Factor winner had sent her on Instagram

Cheeky: The Circle winner Natalya – who appeared on the Channel 4 show in 2021 – shared a screenshot which showed several messages the former X Factor winner had sent her on Instagram

James also showed his generosity by donating £520 to a sponsored walk Natalya is doing to help mental health charities. 

James and Jessica first started dating in 2012 when she worked as a backing dancer on the series of The X Factor James won.

The couple split last July but have once again sparked romance rumours as the model shared a sweet snap of them to her Instagram which read: ‘ride or die’

MailOnline have contacted James’ representatives for comment. 

Couple: James and Jessica first started dating in 2012 when she worked as a backing dancer on the series of The X Factor James won

Couple: James and Jessica first started dating in 2012 when she worked as a backing dancer on the series of The X Factor James won

Natalya appeared on the controversial and bizarre TV show The Circle in which contestants can create a fake social media persona for themselves. 

Last year she spoke out about her guilt after spending weeks posing as a paratrooper called Felix to woo a rival female contestant by telling her ‘everything a woman wants to hear’. 

The reality TV star, from Reigate, Surrey, revealed she has since had to undergo six months of therapy. 

Winner: Natalya appeared on the controversial and bizarre TV show The Circle in which contestants can create a fake social media persona for themselves

Winner: Natalya appeared on the controversial and bizarre TV show The Circle in which contestants can create a fake social media persona for themselves

She said: ‘I was torn apart with feelings of guilt and imposter syndrome. What I was doing was morally wrong because I was leading a girl on for a relationship. 

I was lying essentially to everyone about who I was. It started to really get to me.’

Contestants on the programme, hosted by Emma Willis, all live in an apartment block in Salford, but never meet in person and instead form relationships using fake social media platform The Circle. 

They rate each other, with the lowest-scoring player getting the boot, until there is only one person remaining. 

It was not until the final – recorded in 2020 and screened in 2021 – that rival contestant Manrika Khaira, 25, discovered ‘Felix’ was a sham.

She said: ‘I kind of dug myself into a hole with that romance angle and I think as soon as you start to get emotionally connected in a romantic way that’s when boundaries start being crossed to a sense where you could actually be hurting a real human.

‘I was living in that lie. After I left, I just ate pizza and sat staring at a wall for four days. I didn’t know what to do. I had six months of therapy.’

Struggles: Natalya – the most recent winner of Channel 4’s The Circle – has spoken of her guilt after spending weeks posing as a paratrooper called Felix

Struggles: Natalya – the most recent winner of Channel 4’s The Circle – has spoken of her guilt after spending weeks posing as a paratrooper called Felix

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Read more at DailyMail.co.uk