Sport: Wayne Rooney flew back from US to celebrate Coleen's Wagatha Christie victory over Rebekah Vardy

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Wayne Rooney flew back from the US to celebrate Coleen's Wagatha Christie victory with a slap-up meal at his favourite Manchester restaurant.

The former England star was in Washington DC, where he now manages DC United, but flew back for the ruling which found yesterday that his wife had won the high-profile libel case over Rebekah Vardy.

The Rooneys enjoyed a meal out at Wing's Restaurant on Thursday evening - reportedly the footballer's favourite spot in the world, Alison Boshoff reported in the Daily Mail.

It comes as reports suggest Vardy has not ruled out a possible appeal despite legal experts claiming she has little hope of being successful and would be better off 'retiring to a Scottish island'.

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Vardy had sued over an accusation she had leaked details of her private life to the press. It came after Mrs Rooney had staged an elaborate sting operation to find out who was passing on stories about her private life to The Sun.

The judge, Justice Karen Steyn, said in her ruling that Coleen had successfully proved her allegation was substantially true.

Mrs Vardy will have to pay her rival's costs as well as her own, which sources in both camps say comes to between £2million and £3million.

The huge legal bill means the Vardys may be forced to sell their beloved Portuguese villa to cover the costs.

Wayne Rooney flew back from the US to celebrate Coleen's victory with a meal at his favourite Manchester restaurant last night. Pictured: The Rooneys at Wing's on an earlier occasion © Provided by Daily Mail Wayne Rooney flew back from the US to celebrate Coleen's victory with a meal at his favourite Manchester restaurant last night. Pictured: The Rooneys at Wing's on an earlier occasion Rebekah Vardy and footballer husband Jamie (pictured leaving court at an earlier hearing) have been left with a £3m legal bill after Mrs Justice Steyn ruled in favour of Coleen Rooney © Provided by Daily Mail Rebekah Vardy and footballer husband Jamie (pictured leaving court at an earlier hearing) have been left with a £3m legal bill after Mrs Justice Steyn ruled in favour of Coleen Rooney

The 40-year-old wife of Leicester City striker Jamie Vardy relentlessly pursued the case against her Wag rival Coleen Rooney for nearly three years after being accused of leaking private stories about Coleen and her family to The Sun newspaper.

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The bombshell verdict from Court 13 of the High Court was handed down remotely online at noon by Mrs Justice Steyn just over two months after the hearing in May. Vardy's failed libel suit has been branded the most ill-advised in history.

Mrs Vardy had insisted on a full trial in the glare of the international media - and lost.

Legal expert Mark Stephens dashed cold water on any ideas Mrs Vardy may have had in terms of an appeal and described her decision to go to court as 'ill-advised'.

He told MailOnline: 'She has got no hope whatsoever of appealing. The judge has made findings on the fact, in order to appeal she has to demonstrate that the judge has erred in law some way - and she has not.

'This case was always ill-advised. If you go into a libel courtroom, the lawyers are paid to dissect you. They did it. They damaged both women reputationally.

The Rooneys celebrated the victory last night with a meal at Wayne's favourite restaurant © Provided by Daily Mail The Rooneys celebrated the victory last night with a meal at Wayne's favourite restaurant

'Unfortunately for Vardy the stain will be very long lived. She will be better off retiring to a Scottish island and not saying much ever again.

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'An appeal is going to be throwing good money after bad and this is already an own-goal. What you don't want is an own hattrick that makes a disaster out of a crisis.'

Media litigator Matthew Dando, a partner at Wiggin LLP, told MailOnline: 'It is a devastating and damning judgment for Rebekah Vardy that leaves her credibility in tatters. It is hard to imagine a stronger judicial condemnation of her evidence.

'It will do real damage to Rebekah Vardy's finances too as she will have to pay Coleen Rooney's legal costs as well as her own.

'It is hard to imagine Rebekah Vardy emerging from this with anything less than a fatal wound to her character and credibility'.


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The High Court has found that Mrs Rooney's social media post accusing her rival was 'substantially true' and that Mrs Vardy 'knew of, condoned and was actively engaged' in leaks to the media by her ex-agent Caroline Watt.

Rebekah Vardy (pictured on May 13) said she was 'devastated' and surprised by the verdict © Provided by Daily Mail Rebekah Vardy (pictured on May 13) said she was 'devastated' and surprised by the verdict Wayne and Coleen (pictured together on May 12) even had a pre-celebratory meal together © Provided by Daily Mail Wayne and Coleen (pictured together on May 12) even had a pre-celebratory meal together

And in a damning assessment of Mrs Vardy's evidence, the judge said 'significant parts were not credible' and at times her 'evidence was manifestly inconsistent with the contemporaneous documentary evidence, evasive or implausible'. By contrast, the judge found that Coleen and her witnesses, including husband Wayne, 'gave honest, reliable evidence.'

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Mrs Justice Steyn also ruled that loss of WhatsApp messages between Mrs Vardy and Ms Watt was 'deliberate rather than accidental' - dismissing her agent's claim that a phone fell into the North Sea when a ship hit a big wave.

In her ruling, the judge said it was 'likely' that Mrs Vardy's agent at the time, Caroline Watt, 'undertook the direct act' of passing the information to The Sun.

But she added: 'Nonetheless, the evidence ... clearly shows, in my view, that Mrs Vardy knew of and condoned this behaviour, actively engaging in it by directing Ms Watt to the private Instagram account, sending her screenshots of Mrs Rooney's posts, drawing attention to items of potential interest to the press, and answering additional queries raised by the press via Ms Watt.

The judge added: 'In my judgment, the conclusions that I have reached as to the extent to which the claimant engaged in disclosing to The Sun information to which she only had access as a permitted follower of an Instagram account which she knew, and Mrs Rooney repeatedly asserted, was private, suffice to show the single meaning is substantially true.'

For a week in May, the case captivated millions who were left open-mouthed by the evidence including explosive and expletive-filled Whatsapp messages sent by Ms Vardy as well as Coleen's evidence about leaking false stories about her private life to find who was giving them to the tabloids and how her marriage almost fell apart after her husband Wayne was caught drink-driving with a party girl.

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Mrs Vardy and her footballer husband have been left with a £3million legal bill after Mrs Justice Steyn ruled in favour of Mrs Rooney in a judgment that said swathes of her evidence given under oath had been 'manifestly inconsistent', 'not credible' and needed to be treated with 'very considerable caution'.

Rebekah, who now risks losing a quarter of the £12million fortune she shares with Jamie Vardy, said: 'I am extremely sad and disappointed at the decision that the judge has reached. It is not the result that I had expected, nor believe was just. I brought this action to vindicate my reputation and am devastated by the judge's finding.

Coleen Rooney (pictured at court on May 17) is mulling a new TV series about the court case © Provided by Daily Mail Coleen Rooney (pictured at court on May 17) is mulling a new TV series about the court case

'The judge accepted that publication of Coleen's post was not in the 'public interest' and she also rejected her claim that I was the 'Secret Wag'. But as for the rest of her judgement, she got it wrong and this is something I cannot accept'.

She added: 'The case is over. I want to thank everyone who has supported me.'

Vardy had sued over an accusation she had leaked details of her private life to the press. It came after Mrs Rooney had staged an elaborate sting operation to find out who was passing on stories about her private life to The Sun.

The judge, Justice Karen Steyn, said in her ruling that Coleen had successfully proved her allegation was substantially true.

Mrs Rooney has laid into the £3million cost of the disastrous Wagatha Christie libel brought by Mrs Vardy who obdurately pursued the own goal High Court battle that has destroyed her reputation despite her rival trying to settle the case at least four times.

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Coleen said in a statement that she was 'pleased' the ruling went in her favour but that she 'never believed' the case should have gone to court 'at such expense in times of hardship for so many people when the money could have been far better spent helping others'.

It came as leading media lawyer Jonathan Coad said today that Rebekah had been 'effectively branded a liar' by the judge and said a self-inflicted defeat in a case she had brought herself had been 'a disaster'.

Mrs Rooney said: 'It was not a case I ever sought or wanted. I never believed it should have gone to court at such expense in times of hardship for so many people when the money could have been far better spent helping others.

'Both before and after my social media posts in October 2019, I made every effort to avoid the need for such a drawn out and public court case. All my attempts to do so were knocked back by Mrs (Rebekah) Vardy.

'This left me with no alternative but to go through with the case to defend myself and to end the repeated leaking of my private information to The Sun.

'These leaks from my private Instagram account began in 2017. They continued for almost two years, intruding on my privacy and that of my family. Although I bear Mrs Vardy no ill-will, today's judgment makes clear that I was right in what I said in my posts of October 2019.

'Finally, I would like to thank all of my legal team, my family, friends and everyone who supported me, including the public, through this difficult and stressful time.'

Coleen Rooney and Rebekah Vardy together in 2016. The WAGs have ended up in court in the libel trial of the year and Mrs Vardy's reputation is in tatters after bringing the case and losing © Provided by Daily Mail Coleen Rooney and Rebekah Vardy together in 2016. The WAGs have ended up in court in the libel trial of the year and Mrs Vardy's reputation is in tatters after bringing the case and losing

Meanwhile, Rebekah Vardy may be forced to sell her family's beloved Portuguese villa as the couple are facing a multi-million-pound legal bill.

Sources close to the 40-year-old mother of five said she has 'no regrets' about taking the case to court despite the hefty legal bill she has been left with.

Mrs Vardy will have to pay her rival's costs as well as her own, which sources in both camps say comes to between £2million and £3million.

Friends say, as a result, the idea has been raised of selling the couple's luxury villa on the exclusive golf resort of Quinta do Lago in Portugal, which they call their 'sanctuary'.

The property, which has three pools, a gym, steam room and six bedrooms, is thought to be worth in the region of £2million and is available for rent for up to £30,000 per week.

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