Rebekah Vardy to pay $1.7M in costs after losing court fight

Category : Sports

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. libel / ˈlaɪ bəl / (n.) – the act of writing or publishing something false about someone to destroy his/her reputation

    The famous vlogger was sued for libel after he spread rumors about the actress.

  2. acrimonious / ˌæk rəˈmoʊ ni əs / (adj.) – full of anger or bitter feelings

    Their divorce was acrimonious because the wife found out that her husband was cheating.

  3. feud / fyud / (n.) – a situation in which two people or groups remain in a fight or disagreement for a long time

    In the story, Romeo can’t marry Juliet because of the feud between their families.

  4. sleuthing / ˈsluθ ɪŋ / (n.) – the process of finding out who or what caused a crime or some other activity

    We did some sleuthing and found out who stole our neighbor’s cat.

  5. condone / kənˈdoʊn / (v.) – to accept or allow bad behavior

    If you don’t say anything about the crime, it’s almost like you’re condoning it.


Read the text below.

Rebekah Vardy, the wife of English soccer player Jamie Vardy, has to pay about 1.5 million pounds ($1.7 million) in legal costs to fellow soccer spouse Coleen Rooney after losing the high-profile libel lawsuit she brought against Rooney.

Vardy, 40, lost her libel claim against Rooney, 36, in July when a judge ruled that a widely circulated social media post Rooney wrote accusing Vardy of leaking her private information to the tabloid press was “substantially true.”

In an order made public on Oct. 4, a judge ruled that Vardy should pay 90% of Rooney’s legal costs.

The case, which mixed social media, an acrimonious celebrity feud and amateur sleuthing, was a British media sensation and made headlines for days. The two women are both married to famous footballers: Vardy to Leicester City and England striker Jamie Vardy, Rooney to former Manchester United and England star Wayne Rooney.

The dispute began when Rooney said she purposely posted fake stories on Instagram to find out who was passing her private information to the press. She said she blocked all accounts from seeing her Instagram stories apart from the one she suspected of being the leaker. The stories then duly appeared in The Sun.

In an October 2019 post seen by almost 2 million followers, Rooney revealed it was Vardy’s account that was the culprit. She was dubbed “Wagatha Christie” — a play on the slang term “WAG,” for wives and girlfriends of soccer stars, and the name of crime author Agatha Christie.

Vardy launched the court battle to defend her reputation. But judge Karen Steyn said it was likely that Vardy’s agent had passed Rooney’s private information to The Sun newspaper, and that “Mrs. Vardy knew of and condoned this behavior.”

This article was provided by The Associated Press.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

  • In an October 2019 post seen by almost 2 million followers, Rooney revealed it was Vardy who was leaking her information. What do you think about fights or accusations that happen publicly on social media? Discuss.
  • What do you think social media platforms should do when public fights happen on their platforms (ex. nothing, suspend the accounts of people involved)? Discuss.

Discussion B

  • What do you think should be done to organizations that publish people’s private information? Discuss.
  • What steps are you taking to avoid having your personal information leaked? If none, is there anything that you’d like to start doing? Discuss.
Category : Sports