Jamie Vardy denies former England captain had 'awkward' chat with him
Wayne Rooney is talking nonsense! Jamie Vardy denies former England captain had ‘awkward’ chat with him about Rebekah before dramatically leaving Wagatha Christie libel trial early
- Rebekah Vardy had left day six of Wagatha Christie libel trial early on Tuesday
- Her husband Jamie accused Wayne Rooney of ‘talking nonsense’ about them
- The Rooneys had appeared in good spirits and were smiling as they left court
Rebekah Vardy dramatically left the Wagatha Christie libel trial early yesterday after her husband accused Wayne Rooney of ‘talking nonsense’ about them.
Jamie Vardy led his wife out of the High Court during a ten-minute interval.
Moments later, her legal team told the judge she had gone because she ‘was not feeling very well’.
The Rooneys appeared in good spirits and were smiling as they left court at the end of the day’s proceedings.
The Rooneys appeared in good spirits and were smiling as they left court at the end of the day’s proceedings
Rebekah Vardy dramatically left the Wagatha Christie libel trial early yesterday after her husband accused Wayne Rooney of ‘talking nonsense’ about them
In an unusual step, Leicester City striker Vardy, 35, issued a statement in which he disputed Rooney’s account to the court.
However his carefully worded comments stopped short of accusing the Derby County manager of lying under oath.
Rooney, 36, had told the court about an ‘awkward’ chat in which he asked Vardy to speak to his wife because her behaviour was a potential distraction for the England team during the Euros in 2016.
England’s record goalscorer said he was asked to step in by manager Roy Hodgson and his deputy Gary Neville because of concerns in the international team’s camp over Mrs Vardy’s diary column in The Sun.
He said it broke an unwritten rule among the players not to court publicity during big tournaments.
He was giving evidence during his wife Coleen’s ‘Wagatha Christie’ libel trial, launched after she accused Mrs Vardy of leaking information.
Rooney said that the leaks had been ‘very traumatic’ for his wife, as she had not known who was behind the betrayal and who she could still trust.
The experience had changed her, he told the court, adding that she had not told him about her planned sting operation to catch the culprit by planting fake stories on her private Instagram account.
Vardy watched intently as Rooney was asked about their ‘awkward’ chat during Euro 2016.
He said there was ‘a lot of negativity’ surrounding Mrs Vardy’s column for The Sun and so he agreed to ask Vardy ‘to ask his wife to calm down’.
Rooney recalled sitting down with his teammate over a can of Red Bull and a coffee in the England squad’s games room during the competition in France.
He said: ‘I remember the conversation I had with Jamie. It was awkward for me to speak to a teammate about his wife.
‘It wasn’t my place to speak to Mrs Vardy. I was asked to speak to Mr Vardy and I followed those instructions.’
Rooney said he did not know whether Vardy had raised the issue with his wife, saying: ‘If Jamie gives that information to his wife or not is not down to me.’
He was asked whether he was certain the conversation took place and replied: ‘I’m sat here under oath. I 100 per cent spoke to Mr Vardy on the situation. Again, if he wants to relay that back to his wife that’s entirely his business.’
Around two hours later, Vardy issued the statement through his wife’s PR agent. He said: ‘Wayne is talking nonsense. He must be confused because he never spoke to me about issues concerning Becky’s media work at Euro 2016.
‘There was nothing to speak about, I know this because I discuss everything with Becky.’
The Vardys arrived at court hand in hand, and continued to hold hands throughout most of the morning’s hearing.
Mrs Vardy, who wore a £1,100 navy trouser suit by US designer Veronica Beard, briefly rested her head on her husband’s shoulder when they arrived back in the court after the lunch break.
They failed to reappear in court after the ten-minute mid-afternoon break, when Mrs Vardy’s legal team announced she had left because she was feeling unwell. It was the second day in a row that the 40-year-old left early.
On Monday afternoon the court was told she had left because of a pre-arranged appointment.
The case revolves around the alleged leak of information from Mrs Rooney’s private Instagram account.
Mrs Rooney, 36, was dubbed ‘Wagatha Christie’ after she revealed she had blocked all her followers except one, and then planted fake stories to catch the culprit, tweeting: ‘It’s……….Rebekah Vardy’s account.’
Rooney, who gave evidence for 28 minutes, said he had become aware of his wife’s frustration over the leaks in 2017 but had not known about her sting operation.
He said he had learned of most of the events only during the past few days in the courtroom, adding: ‘It’s been a long week.’
He described the toll the whole experience had taken on his wife, saying: ‘We certainly didn’t want to be in this court. I have watched my wife over the last two-and-a-half years really struggle with everything that has gone on.
‘She’s become a different mother and a different wife. It’s been very traumatic for my wife through this situation.
‘Hopefully – whatever the judgment is on this case –myself, my wife and our children can go on and live our lives. It’s not something we wanted to be part of.’
Mrs Vardy launched the lawsuit against Mrs Rooney in 2019, accusing her of libel over the ‘It’s………Rebekah Vardy’s account’ tweet.
Mrs Rooney denies the claim and insists she was right to say the leaks came via Mrs Vardy’s Instagram account.
Her lawyers say Mrs Vardy’s agent Caroline Watt discussed the information with Mrs Vardy and leaked it to The Sun.
They have told the court that a ‘series of unfortunate events’ meant messages between the two women had since been deleted.
Mrs Watt’s phone was accidentally dropped into the sea and never recovered and Mrs Vardy’s laptop stopped working and was discarded.
Giving evidence to the court, data expert Matthew Blackband said the most likely explanation for the loss of some WhatsApp messages between Mrs Vardy and Mrs Watt was that they were ‘manually deleted’.
Mrs Vardy has said they were lost when her laptop crashed during a data transfer. A second data expert, Ian Henderson, said the loss was ‘somewhat surprising’.
Earlier Rooney had said that Mrs Vardy spent so much time talking to her husband on FaceTime during Euro 2016 that it was like she was ‘almost there with the team’.
The case continues.
Revealed: The Roodunnit Posts
One shows a damaged car, another a bottle of wine after a hard day.
These posts, released by the High Court yesterday, were the key element of Mrs Rooney’s sting – published on her Instagram, but visible only to Mrs Vardy’s account.
Mrs Rooney’s posts: One shows a damaged car, another a bottle of wine after a hard day
The posts, released by the High Court yesterday, were the key element of Mrs Rooney’s sting
Last man on earth to learn about the Wagatha drama? Me, says Wazza!
By Jane Fryer for the Daily Mail
The atmosphere in Court 13 is febrile, expectant, excited. Fevered, even. Because, finally, after a long week of lugging giant Fendi handbags about for his wife, bursting out of his school uniform and looking catatonically bored, Wayne Rooney is on the stand and looking rather good in a smart blue suit that, for once, fits perfectly.
Happily, he is not here to discuss Derby County’s relegation, his surprising penchant for salads – yes, really – or any of his extramarital hiccups. Just to establish three simple things.
Firstly, that at the much-discussed 2016 Euros and on the instructions of England manager Roy Hodgson, Rooney had ‘a word’ with Jamie Vardy to ask him to ‘calm down’ his wife, who was penning a column for The Sun at the time.
Court sketch: The Wags and Jamie Vardy. Rebekah dramatically left the Wagatha Christie libel trial early yesterday after her husband accused Wayne Rooney of ‘talking nonsense’ about them
Secondly, whether, before Coleen’s big reveal, he was aware of her brilliant sleuthing and the ‘Scousetrap’ she had set to snare unsuspecting Rebekah Vardy.
And, finally, how he and Coleen had weathered the press intrusion.
And goodness me, he starts well. A ripple of surprise goes round the court as he stands here, strong as an ox and calm as a sloth in the sun.
He’s almost as good as Coleen. Dignified, too – as he confirms that, yes, his private Instagram handle is ‘wazzaroon08’ (not that he’s been active for a while) – and does everything in his power to avoid looking at his former England team-mate.
Because, after a six-day absence and stealing a teeny bit of Wayne’s football legend thunder, Jamie Vardy has finally turned up.
(And it must be said he’s looking pretty darn hot in his perfectly cut suit, shiny shoes and artfully swished hair.)
Perhaps that’s why Rebekah shot off early yesterday afternoon with a face like thunder in her lemon meringue suit. Maybe she roared home to winkle him out of their luxury £3million mansion near Grantham.
Or perhaps he was always coming – after all, Leicester City do have an upcoming match against Chelsea.
Whatever. He’s here. And a good thing too, because while he’s been playing a blinder for Leicester City with his best scoring run of the season – four of his 14 goals coming this week – we all know poor Rebekah’s had the week from hell; alternately crying, sighing and, as David ‘Shere Khan’ Sherborne would have it, lying.
Not now though! She’s a woman transformed – glinting and glowing as she and Jamie hold hands under the table.
But, anyway, back to Wayne who, as the cross-examination continues, is handling himself well in the box – if not with quite the flair he displayed with his 78th-minute bicycle kick that did for Manchester City in the 2011 derby.
Coleen and Wayne Rooney photographed as they leave the Royal Courts of Justice, Strand, on May 17
So when hoary old Hugh Tomlinson QC dares to suggest the 2016 Rooney/Vardy chat never happened, Wayne bats him away with his clean scouse tenor.
‘I’m sat here under oath and I’m telling you 100 per cent that I spoke to Mr Vardy.’
He even adds a dash of evidential garnish by explaining he was drinking a coffee at the time, while Vardy sipped a Red Bull.
On we move to Coleen’s months of deep investigation. Where things take a surprising turn.
Because, by his own account, Wayne knew nothing about it. Not a jot. Nothing about the fake posts to trip up Vardy.
Nor her sleuthing masterplan or the 13 sentences so carefully crafted in Coleen’s jotter. Not a single thing about her planned ‘big reveal’.
‘My wife is an independent woman who does her own things,’ is all he’ll say. ‘I didn’t want to get involved.’
They’ve been together for 19 years but, extraordinarily, it turns out Wayne’s very first inkling was on October 9, 2019 when he woke up in the US – where he was working at the time – and, along with the rest of the world, read his wife’s dramatic ‘It’s ……….Rebekah Vardy’s account’ tweet.
‘It was a surprise to me,’ he tells the court, as Coleen looks on, serene as a swan. At the other end of the bench, the Vardys bob about in shocked excitement like a pair of meerkats.
But maybe more surprising is Wayne’s insistence he still knew almost next to nothing about the whole sorry Wagtastic drama until last week.
What about the £3million libel suit gathering pace for the past two-and-a-half years? The screaming headlines.
The bulging legal teams. The star lawyers. The brouhaha, the trolling. Wasn’t he even a bit curious who Wagatha Christie might be?
‘I’ve never discussed it with my wife,’ he says firmly. ‘Me sitting in this courtroom this week is the first time I’m hearing everything in this case.
‘It’s been a long week. It’s the first time I’ve heard any of it…I’ve been here to support my wife. This week is the first time I’ve had any understanding of what’s all happened.’
We all know how independent and private Coleen is. And how busy they both are – she with the boys, him wrestling with Derby County.
Though, to be fair, their body language – so straight-backed and separate – is a bit of a giveaway.
Even so, it’s a bit surprising. Certainly, Rebekah Vardy looks utterly gobsmacked.
This is, after all, the woman who spent so much time FaceTiming her husband during the 2016 Euros – even when he was just hanging out and playing pool with the lads – that the others felt she was almost part of the team.
Rebekah and Jamie Vardy pictured together as they leave the Royal Courts Of Justice, London, on Tuesday
It’s hard to imagine a single thing she doesn’t discuss with Jamie. She’s whispering in his ear right now, while still holding his hand under the table as Wayne caps off his evidence with a moving little speech.
About how no one wants to be sitting in court. How, for two-and-a-half years, he’s watched Coleen struggle under the pressure and ‘become a different mother, a different wife’, and how they just want the judgment and to get on with their lives.
By the time he finally sits down again, we’ve all learned some surprising – and less surprising – things.
That Wayne Rooney is surprisingly articulate and thoughtful. That he and Coleen appear to live very separate, independent lives.
That Wayne and Jamie were never proper pals. That no one – not even a QC to the oligarchs – puts our Wayne in the corner.
But perhaps most arrestingly that Wayne has not – as we wrongly assumed – been sitting here bored out of his enormous skull all week. No! He’s actually been utterly gripped as the entire mad Wagatha Christie story unfurled before him and he realised he was the very last person in Britain to know.
What a day. What a treat. What a ride. We need a break. But not yet, because, just as we’re all settling down to a nice soothing afternoon of densely detailed expert evidence, the Vardys take an early bath, again. Rebekah’s feeling ill, apparently.
Poor her. Maybe it’s the excitement of having Jamie by her side. Or perhaps she’s just feeling sick of the Rooneys.
Because, as it turns out, while we sat in court, her ‘representative’ was outside, on the front steps of the Royal Courts of Justice, reading out the following statement from Jamie.
‘Wayne is talking nonsense. He must be confused because he never spoke to me about issues concerning Becky’s media work at Euro 2016.
‘There was nothing to speak about, I know this because I discuss everything with Becky…’
Frankly, after all that, we’re a bit relieved to be told there’s no court tomorrow, so we have a calming break before returning for the final gripping episode of Wagatha Christie. Hopefully Rebekah will be feeling better by then.
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