Post-match analysis of the Rebekah Vardy/Coleen Rooney beef 1 month ago

Post-match analysis of the Rebekah Vardy/Coleen Rooney beef

Not since last year's Champions League semi-finals have we seen a more staggering turn of events

There was a feverish kind of electricity in the air on the morning of Wednesday, October 9, 2019. It was hard to say exactly what it was, but we felt it ticking away in our neurones and synapses, humming along in the back of our minds. The prospect of something momentous on the horizon. The prospect of, for want of a better term, 'colossal beef'. Beef so large, so monstrously huge it would make Knickers the cow double take. Or moo. Or whatever it is big cows do when they see something that startles them.

So it proved, at the uncommon kick-off time of 10:29, as Coleen Rooney got proceedings underway. Notoriously calm and unhurried on the ball, she started the game in her typical manner. You know, setting her stall out. Quietly probing, finding the gaps in the defence. Rebekah Vardy, once an ally, was perhaps taken aback by the patience of her opponent. After all, Vardy had built up a commanding lead from the first leg, selling The Sun stories on gender selection in Mexico, a story about Coleen Rooney returning to TV and finally, and this was the late strike that really tipped the balance going into the reverse fixture, one about basement flooding in the new house. It was basically the tabloid equivalent of Suarez '26, Messi 75', 82' at the Nou Camp last year. Rooney had it all to do.

She did, however, have an ace up her sleeve in the form of a tactical gameplan so good it may as well have been devised on the magnetic whiteboard of the gods themselves. Or by this bloke on Twitter:

Regardless, a lot of systems look good on paper but don't always bear fruit. It's about the execution, too. Who amongst us can say that they weren't excited about Andre Villas-Boas' ludicrously high-pressing, defensive line on halfway Spurs team? Who amongst us was surprised when a centre-back pairing of Michael Dawson and Younes Kaboul couldn't cope with the very unique demands of that?


Clearly learning from the downfall of the manager who most looks like the store manager of a flagship branch of Ted Baker, Rooney worked hard to ensure that the gameplan was drilled into her. She studied the files and the data, she poured over the game tape, but most of all she put it in on the training ground. There was only one way she was going to win this game and that was by blocking every account from viewing her Instagram stories but ONE.

Just think for a second about the dedication that requires. The imagination. The commitment. The work rate. As she revealed in her post-match interview: "It's been tough keeping it to myself, and not making any comment at all". We can only imagine, Coleen.

Vardy, meanwhile, simply failed to come to terms with her rival's new shape and found herself falling into Rooney's counter-pressing traps time and time again. She spent much of the game scrambling around at the back, under heavy pressure and with no way out. Her only option was to try and pump it long to escape the press ('Various people have access to my insta', 'I'm not being funny but I don't need the money' and 'I'm heavily pregnant') but all those hail mary passes were easily picked off by Rooney's staunch defending.

As a result, the goals came. There was the opener, the way she titled the tweet "This has been a burden in my life for a few years now and finally I have got to the bottom of it......". That's right, six ellipses! You could tell from the off that she wasn't messing around, that this was her occasion. But as we know, much worse was to come for the hapless Vardy, whose first response was to try and demand a crisis talks phone call. A demand Rooney wisely chose to ignore.

The second flew in: "For a few years now some who I trusted". Past tense. A dagger through the heart of their relationship. Friendship ended with Rebekah Vardy, now investigative journalism is my best friend. And then the third in the form of definitive proof. "I have saved and screenshotted all the original stories which clearly show just one person has viewed them." Uh oh. Just like that, you knew that the momentum had swung too far, that like all the great comebacks we've seen in the Champions League knockout stages over the years, there was simply no way Rebekah Vardy was getting back into the game. The dice had been rolled. She had concrete evidence. This was Coleen Rooney's time. Vardy didn't have a prayer.

Still, you could have forgiven her for taking her foot off the gas after clawing it back to 3-3 on aggregate. Playing it safe until extra-time, maybe trying to hold out for penalties. But the safe option, the easy route has never much appealed to Coleen Rooney and she instead continued in search of a last-gasp winner. Her efforts would soon be rewarded.

Like Trent Alexander-Arnold's corner at Anfield, it came as divine inspiration usually does. A bolt from the sky. Liquid genius raining down. She paused briefly, then spotted the opportunity. Half a moment, nothing more. Reacting instantly, perhaps sensing the final blow, she shaped up what looked a killer pass. "It's".

The whole world stopped. We watched, mouths agape, unable to comprehend the sublime vision of justice we were seeing. But time was no factor for Rooney now. She had broke from its shackles, escaped its mortal restrictions. She had all the time she would ever need and more. So she waited.


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And waited.

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And waited.

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And waited.

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And waited.


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And waited.

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And waited.

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And waited.

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And waited.

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And waited.

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Ten ellipses like commandments brutalised into stone. Then and only then she was ready, as Divock Origi was, to sidefoot into the top corner, to ignite the limbs like touchpaper, to revel in the ecstasy that only publicly outing Jamie Vardy's Mrs as a grass can bring.

"It's ..........Rebekah Vardy's account."

4-3, the game settled and a day, a contest, that will live long - possibly forever - in the collective sporting memory. This. Is. Why. We. Play.