The 19-year-old One Direction heartthrob is said to be dating pretty Sophia Smith, with whom he attended St. Peter’s Collegiate in Wolverhampton before finding fame with his bandmates on talent show The X Factor.
But while the relationship is being kept under wraps, lovesick Liam jetted his new girlfriend across the Atlantic so he could spend time with her while One Direction performed in Los Angeles last week.
In demand: But One Direction heartthrob Liam Payne has chose to go back to his roots with his latest girlfriendThe group performed their final US show at the Staples Centre on August 10, and Sophia was in the audience alongside Liam’s parents Geoff and Karen and his two sisters, Karen and Ruth, after travelling more than 5,000 from her Wolverhampton home to be by his side.
Sophia was later seen mingling with the likes of Little Mix and Louis Tomlinson’s current girlfriend Eleanor Calder in a VIP section reserved for the band before accompanying Liam to a local tattoo parlour.
A source told the Sunday Mirror: ‘Liam has really fallen for her. It’s getting very serious, very fast.’
New girl: Wolverhampton based Sophia Smith is said to be dating One Direction star Liam Payne. The pair attended school together before he found fame in One Direction
So serious that jealous One Direction fans are believed to have clogged her Twitter timeline with hateful messages, amongst them the ominous tweet: ‘Back off you****.’
The insults have prompted Sophia to withdraw a string of online pictures in which she is seen with Liam – including one of them pulling faces while hanging out with a group of pals.
Despite being able to take his pick of girls, friends say that homely Sophia is the perfect choice because she knew him before he was famous.
Clowning around: Liam and Sophia pull faces with a group of pals in an image posted on Sophia's Instagram account
‘She’s a sweet, normal girl who likes Liam for who he is, not because he’s in the most famous boyband in the world,’ the source added.
Liam’s last serious relationship , with 24-year-old dancer Danielle Peazer, came to an end in May.
The singer later admitting he found the abuse she had to endure on social networking sites hard to handle.
‘Yeah, that’s something that is quite hard – people being a bit rude to (Danielle) on the internet,’ he told US Glamour magazine. ‘And it’s a challenge having a relationship on the road. Credit to anyone who does it, really.’
The singer was also romantically linked to Leona Lewis until the sultry X Factor winner shot down the rumours by insisting they were ‘just friends.’
Old flame: Liam Payne with ex-girlfriend Danielle Peazer before their split in May