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Liam's career made relationship with Cheryl 'hard'

Cheryl and Liam Payne Image copyright Getty Images

Liam Payne and Cheryl's relationship was "hard" because his career takes him out of the country for so long.

That's according to her close friend Kimberley Walsh - who was in Girls Aloud with the singer.

She told OK magazine that having a baby and being "in the public eye" had made things tough for the couple, but Cheryl had been "doing great" since the split.

Kimberley added: "His career obviously takes him out of the country for long periods, so it's hard."

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Kimberley and Cheryl are close friends

Cheryl and Liam announced they were splitting up last Sunday, saying: "We still have so much love for each other as a family."

The couple have a son, Bear, who was born in March last year.

The 35-year-old went on to address tabloid rumours that her mum Joan "could be to blame" for the end of their relationship.

Cheryl said the claims were false, adding: "She is a soft and kind woman who doesn't deserve to be dragged into something that has nothing whatsoever to do with her."

Kimberley said she'd been supporting Cheryl following the split.

She added: "I guess it's just hard, isn't it? When you have a baby your whole being and your whole world changes."

Image copyright PA

Cheryl and Liam made one of their last public appearances together during the Brit Awards in February.

In an interview in March, Liam admitted the pair had experienced relationship struggles.

Cheryl and Liam first met back in 2008, when Liam was 14 and auditioning on The X Factor.

Liam didn't make it past the judges' houses, but made it into One Direction following another audition in 2010.

They got together in 2016 after Cheryl divorced French restaurateur Jean-Bernard Fernandez-Versini.

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