Patsy Palmer disappointed John Fashanu was first to be voted off Dancing On Ice

Patsy Palmer said she had been looking forward to seeing former footballer John Fashanu’s journey of improvement on Dancing On Ice before he became the first to leave the new series.

The 60-year-old found himself in the skate-off against Love Island winner Ekin-Su Culculoglu, 28, following a public vote on Sunday.

Fashanu, who was part of the Wimbledon team that won the FA Cup final against Liverpool in 1988, was sent packing after performing to Norman Greenbaum’s Spirit In The Sky with his professional partner, Alexandra Schauman.

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Appearing on ITV chat show Lorraine, fellow contestant Palmer said: “I feel sad that John went out, because I think John is the typical person that I wanted to see his journey because he had everything about him that wanted so much to improve.

“And, you know, his age and he’s very big and that’s challenging. You can see he has put so much into this with his training, but we’re always going to be sad, we’ve all got to go.”

The 50-year-old former EastEnders star received a score of 21 for her performance to Ride On Time by Black Box with partner Matt Evers, who has been one of the ITV skating competition’s professionals since it launched in 2006.

She said: “I want to just keep trying and trying and it is baby steps… there’s no point in trying to push yourself more than you can do. All of the professionals are really, really skilled at helping you to do that.

“You hope you can stay in long enough but there’s a lot of factors in this… one it’s very physical, it’s dangerous, so anything can happen. You can get injuries – I’ve had a couple of spectacular falls.”

Dancing On Ice 2023
Patsy Palmer and Matt Evers (Matt Frost/ITV/PA)

The actress and DJ said she is really trying to “enjoy every second” of the show because experiences like this go by in a “flash”.

“You spend so much time being nervous and petrified that you look back on them and you say ‘I just wish that I would have found the courage to enjoy it a little bit more’. That’s what I’m trying to do,” she said.

“It’s working a little bit but the nerves 100% take over when you’re in that live performance.”

Evers also revealed that Palmer is “panicking” because the couple are now “in the show”, having had two months to rehearse for their first routine.

– Dancing On Ice continues on Sunday on ITV1.