Coleen and Wayne Rooney fear their reputations will be ‘shredded’ in Wagatha Christie’s defamation trial which begins next week.
Sources close to the couple said they fear details of previously unreported scandals involving Rooney allegedly drinking and courting will emerge in court.
Rebekah Vardy, the wife of Leicester City striker Jamie Vardy, is suing Ms Rooney over her claim in 2019 that Ms Vardy leaked ‘false stories’ about her private life.
The fear is that Ms Vardy’s legal team – who will fight allegations that she has repeatedly colluded with reporters from The Sun newspaper – will turn the tables on Rooney himself.
Coleen Rooney and Rebekah Vardy attend the UEFA EURO 2016 Group B match between England and Wales at Stade Bollaert-Delelis in Lens, France
The couple fear they will face questions about their own relationship with reporters as stories about Derby County Manager Rooney’s supposed indiscretions have been ‘hushed up’.
He has been the subject of a series of scandals involving his private life, including reports he used prostitutes when Ms Rooney was pregnant.
The former Manchester United and England star was banned from driving in 2017 for two years after being arrested by police for being three times over the drink-driving limit. One of the passengers was a young woman he had met in a bar.
And last year he was photographed apparently asleep in a hotel room with a model and his friends after a night out.
A friend of the couple said of the trial, which begins at the High Court in London on Monday: ‘This trial is a slow train wreck and at this stage it is probably too late to stop it happening.’
“The fear is that it will destroy the reputation of the Rooneys as well as that of the Vardys.” Stories can come out that Coleen is unaware of and it could strain the marriage.
Coleen arrives with her friends and family on the opening day of the Grand National in Aintree, Merseyside
“It’s a disaster in the making, but the momentum is now such that it seems too late to stop it.”
The source added: “It has already emerged that Becky has allegedly put up photos of herself with newspapers and that she and her agent have talked about other potential deals in which they will tell stories for money.”
“There may be more allegations along the same lines to come out, so the case will be bad for his reputation.”
Ms Rooney was dubbed Wagatha Christie after staging an elaborate sting operation in which she posted invented personal treats on social media to a dwindling number of people and, ultimately, she believed, only Ms Vardy.
She then waited for them to appear as news reports.
Ms Vardy denies the charges and is suing Ms Rooney for defamation.
Former Everton striker and England captain Wayne Rooney arrives at the Stockport court in 2017
In an earlier written submission to the High Court, Ms Rooney’s solicitor David Sherborne said a statement from Ms Vardy suggests her agent Caroline Watt was behind the leak but that Ms Vardy ‘didn’t tell him. ‘did not allow or tolerate’.
Mr Sherborne said: ‘It now appears… that she too ‘believes’ Ms Watt is the source.
But Hugh Tomlinson, representing Ms Vardy, told the court his new witness statement contained ‘no change in the case pleaded’.
He added: ‘We just don’t know what the real position is in relation to Ms Watt.
“She’s not communicating with anyone…and we don’t know what her position is.”
The court had previously heard that Ms Watt’s phone had “unfortunately” fallen into the North Sea before further information could be extracted for the case.
The trial before Judge Steyn is scheduled to take place from Monday to Friday, with judgment expected at a later date.