The wives and girlfriends of England’s footballers have provided just as much drama off the pitch as the players do on it.
The term WAG first made an appearance in the early noughties when wives and girlfriends including Victoria Beckham, wife of David Beckham, and Cheryl Cole, then married to Ashley Cole, were famous in their own right.
Fake tanned and always sporting a baseball cap over their extensions, the WAGs earned their own legion of fans and became just as fascinating as their footballer counterparts.
Fiercely protective and often very forgiving of their husband’s indiscretions, these WAGs filled magazines and rack up millions of Instagram followers.
But just because they might be sitting next to each other while watching a match, does not mean they all get along.
In fact, some WAG nemeses have waged wars on each other for years – with the most famous recent case being that of Coleen Rooney versus Rebekah Vardy, now known as Wagatha Christie.
Coleen Rooney vs Rebekah Vardy
Coleen was dubbed ‘Wagatha Christie’ after claiming she’d spent months planting false stories on her private account which ended up in the papers, with only Rebekah’s account having access to them, she alleged.
Rebekah, who is married to Leicester City star Jamie Vardy, has vehemently denied the claims and is suing Coleen over them.
The pair are still embroiled in a legal battle as they have so far failed to find a solution to their legal dispute and haven’t been able to settle out of court, with costs expected to reach £500,000 on each side.
In 2019, Coleen told her Twitter followers that she’d carried on a months-long ‘sting operation’ to find out who was selling the fake updates she’d planted to The Sun newspaper.
Planting fake stories about herself on Instagram, Coleen claims she reduced the people who were able to view the stories until just one account was left – Rebekah’s – and she says the stories were still being leaked to the press.
“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,” Coleen wrote.
“After a long time of trying to figure out who it could be, for various reasons, I had a suspicion.
“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.”
Rebekah defended herself, explaining that numerous people had access to her account and asked why Coleen hadn’t just called her to begin with.
She tweeted: “As I have just said to you on the phone, I wish you had called me if you thought this.
“I never speak to anyone about you as various journalists who have asked me to over the years can vouch for.
“If you thought this was happening you could have told me & I could have changed my passwords to see if it stopped.
“Over the years various people have had access to my insta & just this week I found I was following people I didn’t know and have never followed myself.
“I’m not being funny but I don’t need the money, what would I gain from selling stories on you?
“I liked you a lot Coleen & I’m so upset that you have chosen to do this, especially when I’m heavily pregnant.
“I’m disgusted that I’m even having to deny this. You should have called me the first time this happened.”
A recent update on the case saw Rebekah score a partial victory after a High Court judge agreed to throw out part of Coleen’s defence.
At a hearing in June, Rebekah’s lawyers asked the High Court to throw out parts of Coleen’s defence as they were “irrelevant or peripheral” to the case.
This included allegations of Rebekah’s close relationship with The Sun and her alleged but denied authorship of “The Secret Wag” column.
Mrs Justice Steyn threw out parts of Coleen’s defence but kept some aspects that Rebekah’s had applied to strike out.
LightRocket via Getty Images)
Among the parts of the defence that were struck out were that Rebekah showed “publicity-seeking behaviour” when sitting behind Coleen in someone else’s seat at the 2016 Euros.
Danielle Lloyd, who used to be married to footballer Jamie O’Hara, also waded in and voiced support for Coleen.
She said on This Morning she was not “shocked” to hear the allegations against Rebekah, adding: “I’ve had run-ins with Rebekah before over similar things.”
Rebekah tweeted in response: “Danielle Lloyd making false claims on @thismorning that we have had ‘similar run-ins’ is utter b******s.
“She is just fuming that I ‘didn’t get Jamie recruiting’ for her like she asked me to …” she added.
Rebekah Vardy vs Victoria Beckham
Coleen was not the first fellow WAG Rebekah had beef with – in 2016, Rebekah slammed former Spice Girl Victoria for using her kids to promote Brand Beckham.
When it emerged that Cruz Beckham was releasing a Christmas single, Rebekah wrote in her OK! column: “I don’t agree with allowing their 11 year old son Cruz to have an Instagram and Twitter account.
“I know he’s releasing a charity single, but it just encourages trolls.”
“Their eldest son Brooklyn is releasing a book, too,” she continued. “There’s no chance of Brand Beckham dying!”
There was no response from Victoria.
Cheryl Cole vs Victoria Beckham
Cheryl Cole admitted she was hurt when friend Victoria didn’t contact her after husband Ashley was accused of having an affair in 2008 – claims he denied.
The two WAGs had become close during the 2006 World Cup, and Girls Aloud star Cheryl said she was surprised and disappointed that she didn’t hear from Posh in the wake of the scandal.
“I mean, David’s mum is friends with Ashley’s mum, she (Victoria) was in my hotel room the whole time during the World Cup – we’ve had barbecues together – so I was quite shocked by that,” she told Vogue.
Victoria has never commented on the drama.
Katie Price vs Victoria Beckham
Katie Price and Victoria’s spat went on throughout the noughties with both parties slinging mud at one another.
They initially started out as friends, touring the country with Victoria’s husband David and Katie’s then-boyfriend Dane Bowers, to promote Victoria’s 2000 single, Out Of My Mind, which featured Dane.
It was claimed Katie got jealous over their collaboration and blamed hanging out with the Beckhams for her subsequent split from Dane, claiming it “changed” him.
“He used to say ‘Why can’t we be like Victoria and David?’ Like the way they were in love – which I thought we were,” she said.
“He just kept comparing everything. I think it went to his head that he worked for Victoria. He was always going away with her.”
What followed was years of barbs, with Katie accusing VB of being “average”.
And the following year it got even more bitter when Katie claimed VB and her friend sang Who Let The Dogs Out at her in Manchester United’s players’ lounge.
Posh Spice upped the ante by branding Katie ‘vile’ on national TV, before Katie shot back: “[Victoria’s] got a great-looking husband, a little boy, and all the money in the world.
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“She hasn’t got the looks, but you can’t have everything.”
Posh was even accused of changing a flight after learning she’d be on the same plane as Katie – which elicited a rather cutting response from her rep.
The spokesman told the Daily Star: “Victoria doesn’t get drawn into public tittle-tattle with anyone – let alone her. It’s not her style.”
Danielle Lloyd vs Nicola McLean
In 2017, a row got seriously heated between Danielle and former WAG Nicola McLean after Nicola claimed on CelebrityBig Brother that she’d been at Danielle’s 2012 wedding to Jamie O’Hara.
Taking to Twitter, Danielle hit back: “Nicola McLean was not at my wedding just to confirm!”
“And if Nicola turned up in the night she was definitely a wedding crasher,” she added.
But after she left the CBB house, Nicola stood by her claims, insisting she’d been there for the first dance to a live performance by Damage, and even saw the diamante-encrusted Bentley Jamie gifted his bride.
“Yeah, I’d really lie about where I was on the evening of Danielle Lloyd and Jamie O’Hara’s wedding,” she sarcastically told the Daily Mail.
“I’d need to lie about that, my life is that dull that I’d genuinely lie about being at a wedding.
“You’re Danielle Lloyd not f**king Beyonce!” she added.
Nicola was then left furious when Danielle named her new dog Rocky – which is also Nicola’s son’s name.
Nicola tweeted: “Great name might name my new addition Archie,” referring to Danielle’s son’s name.
Danielle then posted a notes app message branding Nicola a “Z-lister” and slammed her “ego”, claiming the dog was named after the film character, and not her son.