Rebekah Vardy should 'admit her mistakes', expert claims

How Rebekah Vardy can rehabilitate her reputation: WAG must apologise to Coleen and ‘admit her mistakes’ in a ‘personal video’ while putting an end to ‘interviews and snide Instagram posts’, expert claims

  • Rebekah Vardy has been ordered to pay £1.5million of Coleen Rooney’s legal bill 
  • Last night, taunted Coleen online by saying she should donate cash to charity
  • Expert told FEMAIL Rebekah could change her approach to the court case 
  • Roz Sheldon said she should ‘get honest’ in a ‘personal video’ explaining her side
  • Reputation management expert said she should put ‘interviews on back burner’

Rebekah Vardy should ‘admit her mistakes’ in a ‘personal long-form video’ and put ‘interviews and snide Instagram posts’ on the ‘back burner’ to save her reputation, an expert has claimed.

The 40-year-old wife of Leicester City star Jamie Vardy faces paying off a £3.7million legal bill following her Wagatha Christie trial loss – with money she already owes to The Sun threatening to push the total over £4million. 

And last night, Rebekah taunted her rival Coleen Rooney with a series of Instagram post last night saying she should donate the money she owes her to charity. 

However a reputation management expert told FEMAIL that Rebekah should alter her approach to the crisis in order to help the British public understand her point of view. 

Roz Sheldon, managing partner of UK reputation management company Igniyte, said:  ‘It, of course, wasn’t a wise move from a reputational point of view for Vardy to launch the case against Coleen in the first place.

‘The best way to try to start improving public perception and repairing her reputation would be to firstly show humility, by issuing a detailed public apology to Coleen, followed by some honest admission of misdoings.’

Rebekah Vardy should ‘admit her mistakes’ in a ‘personal long-form video’ and put ‘interviews and snide Instagram posts’ on the ‘back burner’ to save her reputation, an expert has claimed

She continued: ‘We all do things we aren’t proud of – an admission of mistakes, and an acknowledgement that celebrity culture and press attention can create toxic behaviours would be a great first step.

‘This would soften people’s perception of her, and ultimately make her more likable again.’

Meanwhile Roz also explained how Rebekah’s recent online social media posts wouldn’t be helping her cause.

She advised: ‘Vardy must also stop making cryptic and snide Instagram stories towards Coleen (she has already lost this battle) – such as the Instagram post she made along with the words: ‘It’s always the ones with the dirty hands pointing the fingers.’

Roz Sheldon, managing partner of UK reputation management company Igniyte, said Rebekah should avoid ‘media interviews and promotions’ to appear ‘less celebrity and more of an empath (pictured, in an interview about the case with The Sun) 

Instead, she revealed how posting a lengthy video explaining her point of view could actually help Rebekah turn the tide on public opinion.

Roz suggested: ‘Rebekah needs to get honest in a personal long-form video explaining honestly what went on from her side and that she never meant to harm anyone.’

‘This type of content would resonate hugely and encourage the public to talk about her online in a positive way.

‘Then, it would be beneficial to her to keep the promotions and media interview rounds on the back burner, in an attempt to be less of a celebrity and more of an empath.

Defeated Rebekah posted a cryptic Instagram story after it emerged she will have to pay Coleen £1.5million of her Wagatha Christie legal bills last night 

‘Whether the case and the outcome will leave a permanent dent in her career and reputation remains to be seen.

‘However at the moment, Vardy’s actions appear to be doing very little to alter the public perception against her.’

Wagatha Christie timeline: How Coleen and Rebekah’s war unfolded

September 2017 to October 2019 – The Sun runs a number of articles about Coleen, including that she travelled to Mexico to look into baby ‘gender selection’ treatment, her plan to revive her TV career and the flooding of her basement.

October 9, 2019 – Coleen uses social media to accuse Rebekah of selling stories from her private Instagram account to the tabloids. It prompts #WagathaChristie to start trending.

February 13, 2020 – In a tearful appearance on ITV’s Loose Women, Rebekah says the stress of the dispute caused her to have severe anxiety attacks and she ‘ended up in hospital three times’. 

June 23, 2020 – It emerges that Rebekah has launched libel proceedings against Coleen.

November 19-20, 2020 – The libel battle has its first High Court hearing in London. A judge rules that Coleen’s October 2019 post ‘clearly identified’ Rebekah as being ‘guilty of the serious and consistent breach of trust’.

Mr Justice Warby concludes that the ‘natural and ordinary’ meaning of the posts was that Rebekah had ‘regularly and frequently abused her status as a trusted follower of Coleen’s personal Instagram account by secretly informing The Sun of Coleen’s private posts and stories’.

February 8-9, 2022 – A series of explosive messages between Rebekah and her agent Caroline Watt – which Coleen’s lawyers allege were about her – are revealed at a preliminary court hearing.

Coleen’s lawyers seek further information from the WhatsApp messages, but the court is told that Ms Watt’s phone fell into the North Sea after a boat she was on hit a wave, before further information could be extracted from it.

February 14 – Coleen is refused permission to bring a High Court claim against Ms Watt for misuse of private information to be heard alongside the libel battle. A High Court judge, Mrs Justice Steyn, says the bid was brought too late and previous opportunities to make the claim had not been taken.

April 13 – Ms Watt is not fit to give oral evidence at the upcoming libel trial, the High Court is told as the case returns for another hearing.

May 10 onwards – The trial began

July 29 – Rebekah Vardy lost her defamation case against Coleen Rooney, the judge ruled Mrs Rooney’s accusation was ‘substantially true’.

She explained: ‘From the outset, Coleen was seen to be correctly the victim in this case, and public support for her was only helped by her brilliant and thorough Wagatha Christie Instagram sting operation that revealed and levelled the accusations towards Rebekah Vardy.

‘The devious leaking of Coleen’s private information by Vardy to the tabloid press (identified by Coleen’s accurate process of elimination) was something the public already found hard to stomach.’

‘Vardy seemed to have been hell-bent on blowing up her own reputation by going to court and going public.’

She continued: ‘WhatsApp messages, tipping off the press, then suing for libel and losing very publicly, have damaged Vardy’s reputation immensely from a moral perspective but given her even greater celebrity status.

‘It seemed to have been about creating a bigger story, even at an incredibly high reputational and financial cost.

‘Now Vardy has been ordered to pay a substantial £1.5million towards Coleen’s legal costs – it’s a pretty significant financial blow, but when it is compared to the cost to her reputation, it’s just the tip of the iceberg.’

Coleen and Rebekah, who were once friends, spectacularly fell out over the former’s Instagram post which ignited a ferocious three-year battle between them and culminated in May’s High Court trial.

Coleen set her trap by posting three fake stories on her personal Instagram page which unbeknown to Rebekah were only shared with her account. Stories were published in The Sun about all of them.

The first of the ‘fake’ stories was posted in April 2019 and featured a snap on board a passenger jet heading to Mexico with the caption: ‘Let’s go and see what this gender selection is all about.’

In September 2019 Coleen posted a fake story hinting she might be in I’m a Celebrity while the third, a month later, was about her basement getting flooded.

Coleen’s social media post accusing her fellow Wag of being the source of the leaks led initially to a furious war of words between the pair.

Attempts to try and resolve their dispute before it came to court all failed, resulting in May’s blockbuster two-week trial which drew international media attention as both Wags gave evidence adding to the high drama in the High Court.

The 40-year-old wife of Leicester City star Jamie Vardy has been ordered to pay £1.5million of Coleen Rooney’s legal bill, with £800,000 transferred by November 15.

Ms Vardy will also have to pay her own legal bill – which was put at £2,017,860, including £825,000 for her solicitors and £689,000 for her barristers.

With £200,000 of additional trial costs, this brings the total estimate to around £3.7million – but some have estimated it could exceed £4million.

A source told The Sun today that the costs were going to hit the 40-year-old hard and that it is a ‘tense time for her’ as she waits to hear when she will be expected to pay the rest of the money to Coleen.

The source said: ‘Becky losing the libel trial is going to hit her pocket hard. Understandably she’s not happy about it.

‘Becky is waiting to find out how much more she’ll be asked to fork out after her first payment. It’s a tense time for her, especially when she just wants to draw a line in the sand and move on.’

Coleen Rooney and Rebekah Vardy together in 2016. The WAGs 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

Mrs Rooney posted on Instagram accusing Mrs Vardy of leaking stories to The Sun newspaper following her own months-long ‘sting operation’

Last night, Rebekah shared a picture of a money jar labelled ‘charity’ along with an extract from a report of the libel trial saying: ‘She’d be far happier to see the money they would have spent on lawyers being used in a more positive and productive way.’

Rebekah has also written on the picture herself, telling Coleen: ‘Let’s hope you put your money where your mouth is and some good can come of this whole embarrassing spectacle!’

But a team Rooney insider told The Mirror: ‘It’s a bit rich to be preaching about money when Coleen wanted to settle this before the costs started racking up.’

Coleen also said following her victory: ‘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.’

Rebekah’s companies barely have enough cash to cover the first downpayment on the legal bill, she has to pay Mrs Rooney, paperwork shows.

The 40-year-old wife of Leicester City star Jamie Vardy (pictured: The couple pictured outside court during the libel trial) shared an image on her private Instagram account which said: ‘It’s always the ones with the dirty hands pointing the fingers.’

The Rooneys walking through a crowd of photographers as they left the Royal Courts of Justice on day four of the Wagatha Christie trial: Coleen made her first appearance in the witness box after Rebekah Vardy’s tearful evidence

V9 Media Limited had retained earnings of £856,000 in June last year, which would pay for the initial downpayment of £800,000 she was told to settle immediately.

But Rebekah will still be left with a further £700,000 top up owed to Colleen for costs after their court battle. She also has her own costs of around £1.5m, meaning the total legal bill for her is around £3m.

Rebekah and Jamie’s two other companies actually have combined losses of nearly £175,000. V9 Academy Limited was £125,912 in the red and BKYV Media Limited was down by £48,579 in the year up to the end of June last year.

Jamie Vardy signed a new two year deal with Leicester City in August and is believed to be earning around £160,000 a week, which works out at £8.32m a year but almost half of that is likely to go in tax and national insurance, leaving and estimated take home pay of £4.386 million, according to MoneySaving Expert’s income tax calculator.

It is not known how much money the couple have in their personal bank and investment accounts.

Rebekah shared the above picture on her Instagram, urging Coleen to donate the legal costs she must pay her rival to charity

Victorious Coleen has been seen working-up a sweat at the gym after it emerged rival wag Rebekah Vardy will have to pay £1.5million of her Wagatha Christie legal bill

Earlier, Mrs Vardy shared a different image on her private Instagram account which said: ‘It’s always the ones with the dirty hands pointing the fingers.’

She had taken to social media throughout the course of the trial to make thinly veiled digs at Coleen, including once saying that quarrelling with her was like ‘arguing with a pigeon’ and that regardless who is right, the bird would still ‘s*** in your hair.’

Vardy was accused of deliberately deleting WhatsApp messages central to the case as it was suggested her agent also intentionally dropped her phone in the North Sea.

Mrs Vardy and her footballer husband were left with the bill after Mrs Justice Steyn ruled in favour of Mrs Rooney in a judgement that said swathes of her evidence given under oath had been ‘manifestly inconsistent’, ‘not credible’ and needed to be treated with ‘very considerable caution’.

Because she had changed her settings so only one user could see it she felt confident to make the famous declaration ‘it’s….Rebekah Vardy’s account’.

Dubbed the ‘trial of the century’ or the ‘war of the Wags’ simmering tension between the two increased after messages between Rebekah and her agent were read out in which she referred to Coleen as a ‘nasty b***h,’ ‘c**t’ and ‘stupid cow.’

The Wagatha Christie trial also led to a dramatic showdown between two of English football’s most prolific strikers, Wayne Rooney and Jamie Vardy who went on the attack in defence of their wives.   

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