Ben Foden praises his ex-wife Una Healy for raising their ‘loving and gentle’ children alone

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Ben Foden praised his ex-wife Una Healy for raising their “loving and gentle” children alone after their divorce in 2018.

The professional rugby player, 36, shares Tadgh, 6, and Aoife, 9, with the former The Saturdays bandmate, 40, claiming it’s thanks to her that they’ve gotten so good.

He told The Mirror: ‘I always take my hat off to Una. She’s been raising the kids on her own for the past few years, and they’re wonderful kids, very loving and gentle, and also intelligent—and they definitely don’t get that from me.

“They certainly won’t get it from me!” Ben Foden praised his ex-wife Una Healy for raising their ‘loving and gentle’ children alone, following their divorce in 2018 (pictured in 2019)

“I would like them to be involved in music and acting. They made an ad with Una for McDonald’s and were great at it.”

Ben married his second wife Jackie Smith Foden in 2019, just two weeks after they met and the following year they welcomed their daughter Farrah.

He added: “Jackie is just obsessed with Farrah, she has changed her whole outlook on life. And she’s a brilliant stepmother to the other two.”

Ben is gearing up to take part in the upcoming series Dancing On Ice along with professional partner Robin Johnstone, which kicks off on Sunday.

Exes: The professional rugby player, 36, shares Tadgh, 6, and Aoife, 9, with the former The Saturdays bandmate, 40, claiming it's thanks to her they've gotten so good (pictured in 2017)

Exes: The professional rugby player, 36, shares Tadgh, 6, and Aoife, 9, with the former The Saturdays bandmate, 40, claiming it’s thanks to her they’ve gotten so good (pictured in 2017)

The new series will see Love Islander Liberty Poole, 21, BMX Olympic silver medalist Kye Whyte, 22, Paul Gascoigne’s son Regan Gascoigne, 25, The Vamps’ Connor Ball, 25, rugby star Ben and Paralympic Stef Reid, 37.

Other celebrities taking part include host Ria Hebden, 38, pop star and actress Kimberly Wyatt, 39, professional dancer Brendan Cole, 45, and Happy Monday dancer Bez, 57.

Currently, Brendan is tipped as the favorite to win the show, with a 3-1 chance according to Coral.

Family: He said, 'I always take my hat off to Una.  She has raised the children on her own for the past few years, and they are wonderful children, very loving and gentle, and also intelligent

Family: He said, ‘I always take my hat off to Una. She has raised the children on her own for the past few years, and they are wonderful children, very loving and gentle, and also intelligent” (pictured with Tadgh, 6, and Aoife, 9)

Regan is the 4-1 second favorite with the show starting this weekend, with Liberty and Kimberley tied for third at 5-1.

Brendan takes to the ice with veteran pro Vanessa, who was previously crowned series champion with Jake Quickenden.

This year’s celeb contestants will make their on-ice debut this Sunday at the live launch show, with ITV hoping there will be fewer injuries than last year’s chaotic series.

The 2021 series saw stars Denise Van Outen, Billie Faiers and Jason Donovan all retire after injury, as contestants were forced to form a ‘bubble’ with their partners due to Covid restrictions and it was filmed without a live audience.

In love: Ben married his second wife Jackie Smith Foden in 2019, just two weeks after they met and the following year they welcomed their daughter Farrah (pictured in November 2021)

In love: Ben married his second wife Jackie Smith Foden in 2019, just two weeks after they met and the following year they welcomed their daughter Farrah (pictured in November 2021)

Both reserve contestants had to be used for the first time in the show’s history, as three celebrities had to withdraw and two tested positive for the virus.

Denise, 47, suffered a second week injury after sustaining three fractures and a partially dislocated shoulder.

Billie, 31, became the second to withdraw from the competition after sustaining a head injury during practice, while Australian actor Jason, 53, was also forced to leave due to a back injury, on week 6 of the show.

The series took another blow when comedian Rufus Hound, 42, Joe-Warren Plant, 19, and his professional partner Vanessa Bauer, 25, all contracted Covid-19.

The new series Dancing on Ice starts on ITV on Sunday 16 January at 6.30pm.

Coming soon: Dancing on Ice starts on ITV on Sunday 16th January at 6.30pm

Coming soon: Dancing on Ice starts on ITV on Sunday 16th January at 6.30pm

Dancing On Ice 2022: Who are the celebrities?

KYE WHYTE

Age: 22

Profession: Olympic BMX rider

Kye says: “I would like to see if I can make it to the final because I am very competitive.”

RACHEL STEVENS

Age: 43

Profession: Singer

Rachel says:: “It feels real now, this is really happening. I’m so excited, obviously very nervous.’

LIBERTY POOLE

Age: 22

Profession: Love Island star

freedom says: ‘I sometimes skate as a hobby so I can move around the rink, but I can’t do tricks’

STEF REID

Age: 36

Profession: Paralympics

Steve says: “I’m going to be in Dancing on Ice and it’s a little scary, but I can’t wait!”

REGAN GASCOIGNE

Age: 26

Profession: Singer

regan says: “I like to dance, but it’s the skill of this. I’ve always wanted to do it. Always! Ever since I was a kid!’

Kimberly Wyatto

Age: 39

Age: 39

Profession: Pussycat Dolls singer

Kimberly says:: ‘I’m just excited to see what I can do there. I’m up for a challenge!’

BRENDA COLE

Age: 45

Profession: Dancer

brendan says: “I’ve known for quite some time that I would be doing the show and I want to start, I’m so excited to be on the show.”

BEN FODEN

Age: 36

Profession: Rugby player

Ben says: “I like the idea of ​​learning a new sport and a new skill. I’m also quite competitive.’

SALLY DYNEVORO

Age: 58

Profession: Coronation Street actress

sally says: ‘This is a huge challenge. I am so afraid! I just have to take every chance I get.”

BEZ

Age: 57

Profession: Happy Mondays

bez says: “I’m always up for a challenge and I’m already training on the ice.”

RIA HAVE

Age: 36

Profession: Presenter

ria says: “It will be great to learn a new scary skill.”

CONNOR BAL

Age: 25

Age: 25

Profession: The Vamps bassist

connor says:: ‘Of course I’m excited, but I’m really nervous. I’m rather clumsy, prone to accidents.’

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