Giovanni Pernice smiling in tuxedo in front of Strictly logo

Giovanni Pernice tipped for new Strictly role by ex-champ Joanne Clifton

Not sure Gio's fans will like this...

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Giovanni Pernice has been tipped for a new role on Strictly Come Dancing by a former series champion.

This week, Giovanni has exited Strictly with partner Amanda Abbington. Amanda said her exit was due to “personal reasons”.

Joanne Clifton – whose brother Kevin is another ex champ – was part of the Strictly family for three years from 2014.

The pro star was partnered up with two celebs during her stint, Scott Mills and Ore Oduba. And she and Ore went all the way to the final and raised the Glitterball trophy in 2016. Joanne also won the Strictly Christmas special in 2015 alongside Harry Judd.

Giovanni Pernice crosses his hands
Will Giovanni Pernice be interested in doing Joanne Clifton’s Strictly suggestion? (Credit: BBC iPlayer)

She’s gone on to thrive as a star in West End and nationally touring productions since leaving the BBC One dance show. But with a series and Christmas win on her CV, Joanne’s Strictly pedigree is indisputable.

However, some of Gio’s most dedicated fans might not be too impressed with the position she reckons he could end up thriving in.

Joanne Clifton on Strictly 2023 stars

Speaking to Betway recently, Joanne singled out Layton Williams and Nigel Harman as celebs to keep an eye on.

“I think he will be a finalist,” she said about former EastEnders actor Nigel’s chances.

She also hailed Anton Du Beke as “absolutely brilliant” as a judge in her chat.

Anton du Beke makes his point
‘Anton Du Beke is a natural’ (Credit: BBC iPlayer)

Joanne reflected: “Anton is ballroom through and through, like me, and it’s good to have another expertise on the panel. He’s just always himself, and it’s like he was made for it. Anton is a natural and he completely deserves it, too –  he’s been there from the very beginning.”

Furthermore, Joanne also pondered whether the judge’s pal from Anton and Giovanni’s Adventures in Sicily might fancy a go at the job, too.

Amanda Abbington looks at Giovanni Pernice
Giovanni was partnered up with actress Amanda Abbington this year (Credit: BBC iPlayer)

Could this be the future of Giovanni Pernice on Strictly?

Asked whether she could see another professional dancer joining Anton on the panel some day, Joanne indicated several might fancy the gig.

But she picked out Gio as someone that could make an impression as a judge due to his personality. She also likened him to another Strictly fave who hails from Italy.

“Many of us would like to have a go at judging,” Joanne continued.  “I completely get why Anton wanted to.”

He could definitely be a Bruno Tonioli type on the panel.

She added: “I can see Giovanni Pernice going for it in a couple of years’ time. He could definitely be a Bruno Tonioli type on the panel, as he and Anton have their show together. He has a great personality.”

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Fans were devastated over Giovanni and Amanda’s exit from Strictly this week. One person said online: “I’m devastated that Amanda has pulled out of Strictly. Gio and Amanda were my winners!”

Another wrote: “So sad, Strictly is not the same without Giovanni.”

A third added: “Strictly is boring without you , just not the same.”

Read more: All the ‘feud’ rumours Giovanni Pernice has faced during his Strictly career

Strictly Come Dancing 2023 continues this Saturday (October 28) from 6.40pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.

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Robert Leigh
Freelance writer