reported by the Sun that Rooney had sacked her previous legal team amid concerns she could lose the case over “a failure to disclose a crucial detail of her efforts to catch Becky red-handed”.
The newspaper quoted an unnamed “insider” as saying: “Along the way, something has been hidden from everyone else involved and it could end up costing them the whole case”.
If the two parties fail to reach an agreement the defamation case would go to trial, although proceedings would be unlikely to take place until 2021. No paperwork has been filed other than to note Vardy’s intention to sue and confirming the lawyers involved in the case.
The Sun has never commented on the origins of its stories on Rooney but has amended many of them to note the accusation that they were fabricated in order to out the source. Wayne Rooney was recently signed as the star columnist for the Sun’s sister paper, the Sunday Times.
Rooney’s original statement in October set out why she had decided to go public with the accusations against Vardy and set out how she had come to this conclusion: “For a few years now someone who I trusted to follow me on my personal Instagram account has been consistently informing the Sun newspaper of my private posts and stories. There has been so much information given to them about me, my friends and my family – all without my permission or knowledge.
“After a long time of trying to figure out who it could be, for various reasons, I had a suspicion. To try and prove this I came up with an idea. I blocked everyone from viewing my Instagram stories except one account. (Those on my private account must have been wondering why I haven’t had stories on there for a while.)
“It’s been tough keeping it to myself and not making any comment at all, especially when the stories have been leaked, however I had to. Now I know for certain which account/individual it’s come from. I have saved and screenshotted all the original stories which clearly show just one person has viewed them. It’s … Rebekah Vardy’s account.”
Vardy has always claimed she has had issues with other people accessing her Instagram account. Earlier this year, she appeared on ITV’s Loose Women and said she had been hospitalised due to the stress caused by online abuse, which had been exacerbated by Rooney’s accusations.