David Parkin on the issues dogging WAGs

David Parkin on the issues dogging WAGs

FORGET Brexit.

There is no doubting the big story of the week.

Coleen Rooney’s spat with fellow footballer’s wife Rebekah Vardy.

If you’re not familiar with the details of this story then allow me to elucidate the matter.

The wife of Wayne Rooney took to Twitter to claim that the spouse of Leicester striker Jamie Vardy has been leaking stories from her Instagram account to The Sun newspaper.

Bear with me.

It took five months of painstaking detective work by Coleen to track down the miscreant, which must have seriously eaten into the time available for her to go on holiday.

Rebekah Vardy has denied the claims and instructed lawyers over the matter.

The Sun brilliantly headlined this argy bargy between footballers wives as WAGGRO!

Apparently Coleen successfully tracked down the culprit by blocking all except one person from viewing stories on her Instagram account.

She then posted fictitious stories on the social media site such as her going on Strictly Come Dancing, opting for gender selection in Mexico for her next child and the big one – her basement flooding.

All of these apparently appeared in The Sun newspaper – and the only person who could view them was Rebekah Vardy, meaning she was the culprit, according to Coleen.

But she says it wasn’t her.

The hullabaloo saw normally serious news outlets embracing the story with gusto – Radio 4’s Today programme interviewed a footballer’s wife who appears on The Real Housewives of Cheshire – which is probably more to do with Brexit fatigue than the importance of this particular issue.

Things got serious when that intellectual titan and fellow surgically enhanced WAG Danielle Lloyd waded into the debate.

I don’t know what she said but apparently she posted three rat emojis on social media.

Given the surprise that greeted the news that Coleen’s hubby Wayne is due to join Derby County in January, I wondered whether that was also her having Rebekah on and it’s gone too far?

But if it isn’t then I would like to offer her some advice.

Because after five months of diligent detective work she might now find that she has some time on her hands.

Assuming she isn’t going to go full-time Miss Marple and now focus on finding Lord Lucan and getting to the bottom of the Roswell incident, then Coleen may have a bit of time on her hands in Derby.

But rest assured there is plenty to do in the city where I was born, widely acknowledged as the jewel of the East Midlands, mi duck.

She can take her kids to see the donkeys at Markeaton Park – well it might be more fun than watching their equivalents at Pride Park.

She can shop till she drops at the city’s Intu shopping centre – everything from Poundland and Home Bargains to Ann Summers with unique boutiques in between including Extreme Eyebrows beauty parlour and Luvyababes fancy dress shop.

If she’s not sure how to find it when she gets off the bus she only needs ask the Big Issue seller or the bloke flogging four lighters for a pound.

They’re very helpful.

Refueling is important after shopping so Coleen should call in at Birds bakery for a pasty and a custard tart and a pint of Pedigree at Derby’s oldest hostelry, The Dolphin.

I do hope that when her husband does eventually arrive in Derby he doesn’t come by train.

Because across the road from Derby Station are abundant attractions to tempt the weary traveller.

Given Wayne’s previous form perhaps he should avoid Mr Booze and Bubbles massage parlour – the twin pillars of pleasure that stand proudly across the road from the railway station offering a warm welcome to the city.

On the positive side, given the age of some of the massage therapists I’ve seen smoking cigarettes outside, Bubbles is definitely an equal opportunities employer.


SIMON Brown was serving with the British Army in Iraq in 2006 and had successfully completed emergency repairs on a vehicle under heavy insurgent attack when he was hit in the face by a bullet.

An inch more and the bullet would have entered his brain.

Despite his palate collapsing, he stayed conscious and put his thumb in his mouth to keep his airway open while he was rushed back to base in Basra.

After a tracheotomy he was flown back to the UK where he fell into a coma for 17 days and when he regained consciousness he discovered he had lost his left eye, had 20% vision in his right eye, lost both cheekbones, his nasal cartilage, two teeth and a chunk of jaw bone.

He’s had 12 operations totalling 100 hours of surgery.

I sat next to Simon at a Welcome to Yorkshire Y30 dinner at the Grand Hotel & Spa in York last week.

Simon was speaking at the event in support of the charity Help for Heroes.

He might have lost an eye but not his sense of humour.

When I asked if he had served in Afghanistan, he replied: “Oo no, I wouldn’t have gone there, it’s far too dangerous.”

As well as being very funny, Simon is honest and inspiring.

He isn’t afraid to admit that after he left the army he fell into a dark place and made things hard for family and friends who were trying to help him.

“But then I realised I was fortunate to be alive, to have a family around me and that I was determined to help others through my experiences.

“It made me realise I might have a purpose in life.”

Simon gives motivational talks, visits schools, works for charities and has completed two Help for Heroes challenges in Costa Rica and a 100km trek in the Sahara Desert.

Standing alongside Melanie Waters, chief executive of Help for Heroes, this down-to-earth ex-squaddie from Morley in Leeds spoke movingly and powerfully about his experiences to a hushed audience at The Grand in York.

We’ve all probably been guilty of feeling sorry for ourselves or moaning about a minor problem.

Listening to Simon’s experiences and approach puts things in perspective.

Perhaps he should give a few speeches to footballers and their wives.

Have a great weekend.


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