In her statement of defence, Rebekah Vardy tried to reason with Coleen Rooney by saying “I’m not being funny, I don’t need the money” – but surely Vardy knows that money isn’t the only reason a celebrity would strike up a transactional relationship with the press.
To pick an utterly arbitrary example out of thin air: let’s say your partner had been heard directing a racist slur towards a Japanese man in a casino back in 2015. An incident like that could cause quite a lot of unwelcome turbulence.
But what if the Sun had some further details of this event? Details that it chose not to publish. Video evidence, for instance, that could have made life even more difficult for a rising-star striker.
Obviously a paper that showed such kindness and goodwill to a couple in a predicament like this may end up expecting a favour or two offered in return.
Serialisation rights to his autobiography, perhaps? Or the odd insider story?