When it comes to Taylor Swift, EVERYONE seems to have an opinion: From her music to her dating life, a constant stream of chatter surrounds the 27-year-old’s every move. While she certainly has her crew of loyal gal pals, including Lorde and Selena Gomez, she’s got some famous haters too: Katy Perry hasn’t always had the best blood with her, and Pretty Little Liars star Troian Bellisario has also expressed her distaste for the megastar.

We might have assumed that Zayn Malik was in the former camp, given his musical collab with the songstress on this year’s smash hit, “I Don’t Wanna Live Forever,” (not to mention her highly publicized friendship with his GF, Gigi Hadid), and his most recent interview with FADER magazine made his thoughts on the new Taylor all too clear.

When being grilled on the backlash her new tunes may have received by the outlet, Malik was quick to defend his co-creator. “When it comes to anything that has to do with trivia about people’s personal lives, I don’t necessarily pay too much attention,” he admitted. “I don’t pay too much attention to what people even say about me. I just tend to take it for what it is when I meet [those] people in real life and have a conversation with them. If they’re cool with me, then I’ll base my relationship on that.”

According to the “Still Got Time” crooner, Swift most definitely passed as cool. “I rate her as an artist,” he explained. “I think she’s cool, I think she’s successful, and I think she deserves her success because she’s worked hard. That’s just how I look at it. I did a song with her, it was fun, she was professional.”

He also addressed his more personal connection to the pop queen, saying, “She gets on with my girlfriend, they’re good friends. I don’t have a bad word to say about her. She’s cool.”

Spoken like a true gentleman!

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(Photo via Frazer Harrison/Getty)