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Coleen Rooney's legal team look for skeletons in Rebekah Vardy's closet

Coleen Rooney's legal team is piling more pressure on her rival Rebekah Vardy to abandon her libel action by contacting past colleagues and friends in an attempt to gather evidence showing she leaked information.

The Mail on Sunday can reveal Mrs Rooney's team have spent the past six weeks requesting documents from work and personal associates of Mrs Vardy dating back more than a decade.

Sources close to the so-called 'Wagatha Christie' legal battle say Mrs Rooney's investigations have reached an 'extraordinary level' with letters sent to an array of colleagues of Mrs Vardy, particularly in the years between 2014 and 2019 when she worked closely with the media as she became a household name.

Row: Coleen Rooney's legal team have spent six weeks requesting documents from associates of Rebekah Vardy (pictured with Nicola McLean in 2018) dating back more than a decade

The letters request information that might support Mrs Rooney's claim that her rival leaked false stories about her private life to a red top newspaper. Mrs Vardy angrily denies those claims.

The news comes after it emerged that Mrs Vardy's ex-husband Stephen Clarke, 58, has been asked to give evidence as a witness to support Mrs Rooney. He says he has no plans to do so.

A source said: 'Coleen's people are now contacting people they know worked with or knew Becky at the beginning of her quest for fame. Even people who didn't talk or deal with her are being contacted to see what they know.

'Some of the people who have been contacted are quite random. There are a lot of letters currently flying around.'

While legal teams routinely seek evidence ahead of trials, insiders suggest the particularly muscular approach is designed to encourage Mrs Vardy to settle out of court rather than endure a potentially embarrassing public hearing at the High Court, which is expected in April.

Drama: Letters request information that may support Mrs Rooney's (pictured in 2015) claim her rival leaked false stories about her private life to a newspaper. Mrs Vardy denies those claims 

But sources close to Mrs Vardy insist that she is 'strong enough to hold on' and determined to clear her name.

Last week, the 39-year-old wife of Leicester City striker Jamie Vardy said aspects of the legal case had taken a 'dark turn' in recent weeks.

In an online blog, she wrote: 'I feel the time has come where I may need to start speaking out a little more. It feels like a cruel threat.'

The feud began in October 2019 when Mrs Rooney, 35, the wife of former England player Wayne, accused Mrs Vardy of leaking stories and revealed details of her own sleuthing, which drew comparisons with crime novelist Agatha Christie.

In a bid to prove the identity of the mole, Mrs Rooney posted fake Instagram stories but limited access to who could see them to one account.

Mrs Vardy flatly dismissed the allegation and sued when Mrs Rooney refused to withdraw it and apologise. 

The two women have already run up estimated total legal costs of £1.4 million.