Jean-Bernard Fernandez-Versini felt ''overwhelmed'' when he split from Cheryl just a few months after his father died.

The French restaurateur has admitted it was a difficult time in his life and he felt very lonely when his marriage to the former 'X Factor' judge broke down in January 2016 not long after he lost his dad.

Asked how he dealt with the media attention when he and Cheryl broke up, he said: ''I wondered what they could find to say about me. I wondered how you react when someone says a false fact about you and you are by yourself with no one else around you.

''When something ends, it is always difficult. Emotionally it's complicated and hard, especially when it is publicised all over the world with the wrong facts. I had everything up in the air - the grief of my father's death, difficulty in my personal life, building a new business. It was overwhelming and complicated to deal with; I'm not different to anyone else.''

However, Jean-Bernard holds no ill-will towards the former Girls Aloud star - who has since settled down with her new love Liam Payne and is expecting his baby - and has accepted she followed her heart and did what she thought was best for her.

He said: ''Things happen and sometimes you have to follow your heart. If you observe society, everybody is thinking - they should feel more.''

Asked what first attracted him to the 33-year-old singer, Jean-Bernard said they clicked immediately and had an instant chemistry.

Speaking in an interview with the new issue ES Magazine - which is available now - he shared: ''I liked the chemistry we had. I'm sure if you've watched her on TV you can see she has a great sense of humour.''