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Coleen Rooney trial: Rebekah Vardy defends ‘gossiping’ with her agent

The two WAGs are at war over Rooney’s 2019 bombshell revelation she suspected former friend Vardy of leaking stories about her to The Sun newspaper.

In evidence on Wednesday, Vardy said texts between her and agent Caroline Watt – allegedly about leaking information on cheating footballers, model Danielle Lloyd, and former Leicester midfielders Danny Drinkwater and Riyad Mahrez – looked bad but were merely “gossip” and “speculation”.

David Sherborne, for Rooney, showed the court messages about an image posted to Rooney’s private Instagram account, that Vardy believed showed one of the Rooney children on the way to school without a seatbelt on.

“Yes it is, but on her private Instagram, so can’t do anything with it,” replied Ms Watt.

Mr Sherborne suggested Vardy “knew perfectly well (Ms Watt) is monitoring Mrs Rooney’s account”, and pointed out Vardy said on oath yesterday that she was unaware of her agent looking at other people’s private Instagram information through her log-in.

“She has had to look through to find Mrs Rooney’s account,” said Mr Sherborne.

Vardy told the court: “I didn’t know she was intentionally going to people’s Instagrams to check information or see what they have posted.

“We were just gossiping.”

She added: “She never said once she was stalking her account.”

Mr Sherborne told her: “Our case is that far from being aware of what was happening, Ms Watt was looking through Mrs Rooney’s private Instagram account with your permission.

“You knew exactly what she was doing, and you condoned it.”

“No that’s not true,” replied Vardy.

Mr Sherborne suggested Vardy cannot admit she knew about Ms Watt’s alleged activities as “the last shred of your case would vanish”.

“I didn’t admit that,” she said.

“It’s a lie isn’t it,” said Mr Sherborne, to which Vardy replied: “No.”

Earlier in her evidence, Vardy said she was “absolutely just joking” when she told her agent to leak a story about an affair between a footballer and a famous married TV personality.

Messages from September 2018 show Vardy telling Ms Watt to “leak the story” about the TV star “shagging [another man] behind [her partner’s] back”.

Vardy accepted the messages read like she was directing a leak, but she told the court: “That’s the way it reads, but in context it is bits of information in with other bits of information. I was absolutely just joking about that one.

“I was gossiping, that (information) was circling quite a bit.

“I used the word ‘leak’ where I probably shouldn’t use the word ‘leak’.”

Vardy said she had read news stories about the woman involved, saying she was “shocked and disgusted”, but denied orchestrating a leak about the affair.

“Our WhatsApps were sometimes outrageous, sometimes totally inappropriate”, she said of the messages with Ms Watt.

“These are a lot of conversations between friends gossiping, poking fun about people.

“Yes, they don’t read very well, but there are always explanations for them.

“This wasn’t just someone I knew, this was a friend.”

Vardy said it was a “bit of harmless gossip” when she contemplated passing a tip to a reporter about her husband’s teammate Riyad Mahrez going on strike.

Messages aired in court show Vardy told her agent Caroline Watt that Mahrez had not turned up for training at Leicester in February 2018 while trying to force through a move to Manchester City, adding: “Lads are fuming”.

She is then accused of agreeing to Ms Watt’s suggestion that the information could be passed to a Sky Sports News reporter, with the caveat “Just don’t want it coming back on me”.

Asked about the incident and accused of breaking the trust of Leicester and her husband, Vardy called the messages “speculation” and gossip”.

“It doesn’t look good”, she told the High Court. “I was gossiping about things already in the public domain and the press were camped outside the training ground, taking pictures of players going in and out.

“It was an interesting story, pretty much unheard of for a player to go on strike and not turn up when he was contracted for training.”

Vardy insisted her messages to Ms Watt was “speculation and just a bit of information I’ve heard and overheard and also read in the press before.”

When pressed by Mr Sherborne that she had discussed leaking news from within the Leicester dressing room, Vardy said she did not know definitely that Mahrez’s teammates were “fuming”, she said: “I didn’t know that for a fact at all.”

Vardy insisted that the information was not given to Sky News, and added: “We were just having a gossip about something that was already in the public domain. I didn’t see what harm that comment would make

“It was a bit of harmless gossip.”

Rooney’s team say the tip was ultimately given to The Sun newspaper, claiming it shows Vardy’s close relationship with the organisation.

Vardy did accept trying to leak information on footballer Danny Drinkwater when he was arrested for drink driving, and had a “fleeting” thought that she wanted paying for the story. However she said the tip was not taken by The Sun as journalists already knew about the arrest.

Vardy’s evidence continues.

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