A libel trial in the UK has pitted two famous wives of well-known football players at the High Court in London this week. Both refused to reach a prior out-of-court agreement, and it is already known that when a court case has its own name, it is going to bring a tail.
this fight of wagsa generic term that defines the wives and girlfiends (wives and girlfriends, in English) of soccer players, has its origin in 2019, when Coleen Rooney, married to former soccer player Wayne Rooney, publicly accused Rebekah Vardy, married to soccer player Jamie Vardy, of leaking to the newspaper The Sun personal data and information about the private Instagram of the first. The case has been nicknamed Wagatha Christie because of the air of a detective novel due to the hiring of a private detective by Rooney to, according to her, unmask Vardy.
Vardy defends himself
Vardy sued Rooney for defamation, accusing her of leaking her Instagram stories to ‘The Sun’ in 2019
The case now facing them in court is that Vardy sued Rooney for defamation to defend himself against the ugly accusations. The story has become the topic of conversation for many in the country, as both were already well known before this war began on social networks. Both players were chosen for the European Championship in 2016 and the newspapers were full of photos of their wives cheering them on from the stands.
Let’s go step by step. Coleen Rooney desperate to know who was leaking her privacy to the tabloid The Sun In 2019, she hired a private detective to find out who among her small list of followers was betraying her. Then Rooney revealed that the leaks came from Rebekah Vardy’s Instagram account after an operation in which she published a series of false stories, different and only visible to a certain person, and those that reached the tabloid The Sun It was the views by Vardy’s account. “I have saved and captured all the original stories that clearly show that only one person has seen them. And that is Rebekah Vardy’s account,” he said.
The costs of the trial are expected to be much higher than the damages that could be awarded in the end
Vardy denied the accusation: “If you thought this was happening, you could have told me and I could have changed my passwords to see if it stopped.” She claimed that several people had access to her account and that these accusations subjected her to a torrent of criticism from the public and the press and that it was a stressor while she was pregnant with her fifth child. In 2020, after receiving no public apology from Rooney, Vardy filed a civil suit for defamation.
Hugh Tomlinson, Vardy’s lawyer, said in court this week that Vardy believes the culprit may have been his agent, Caroline Watt.
The legal costs will amount to one million euros and even if Vardy wins with the defamation trial, he would only recover 70%
Judges have repeatedly asked them to settle the matter out of court, but neither side has backed down. Libel cases in the High Court are quite rare, largely because they are so expensive. But for Vardy it seems that it is more important to defend his good image in the face of accusations that he believes are unfair. It is to be expected that the costs of the trial will be much greater than the damages that could be awarded in the end.
According to BBC, the legal costs will amount to around 1.17 million euros (1 million pounds) and even if Vardy wins the defamation trial, he would only recover 70% of what was invested in the legal process, leaving a negative of about 350,000 euros (300,000 pounds). If Vardy finally won and Rooney had to compensate her for damages, the figure would be between 17,000 and 47,000 euros (15,000 or 40,000 pounds).