Playing away

September 07, 2010, 12:06 AM GMT+0

Striker Wayne Rooney has shot up to second place on the TellYouGov leaderboard following allegations of infidelity from prostitute Jenny Thompson in this weekend’s News of the World. Thompson claims that Rooney hired her services several times while his wife Coleen was pregnant with son Kai.

Rooney has attracted a significant volume score of 385, after an increase of 296 points in the past 24 hours, putting him at second place on the leaderboard, behind only fallen former PM Tony Blair in unpopularity. Indeed, Rooney’s poor sentiment score of -327 indicates that this is not a case of increased esteem, but rather of heightened notoriety. Indeed, the fresh allegations will strike a blow to the Rooney’s carefully cultivated ‘family’ image, which seemed to have recovered from past scandals.

A selfish disgrace?

Many TellYouGov users, or ‘tyggers’, appear very unimpressed by Rooney’s behaviour, with some even using such strong terms as ‘scum’ and ‘disgusting’. General opinion on the board seems to be that Rooney is selfish and undeserving of his family and wealth. One tygger, perhaps referring to the many revelations of infidelity to hit the sport in recent months, describes Rooney as ‘yet another overpaid footballer who doesn’t appreciate what he has got’. Another referred to Rooney’s previous indiscretions, saying ‘once a cheat, always a cheat’, while one summarily condemned his actions as a ‘disgrace to his family’.

‘A poor role model’

Others are more concerned about how Rooney’s behaviour could be a bad influence on young children, many of whom are clearly felt to ‘idolise’ footballers such as Rooney et al. One tygger describes the striker as ‘overpaid and badly behaved’, and ‘no role model for youngsters’, while another has pointed out that Rooney is not just a poor role model for children but also for ‘young footballers, new fathers and husbands’ too.

‘Couldn’t care less’

In between the negative opinions of Rooney there has also been some suggestion that Rooney’s private life should stay just that - private. Users argue that Rooney’s affair is ‘not news’, with one saying they are ‘fed up’ with the player and ‘couldn’t care less’.

Despite such claims though, it’s evident that Rooney’s actions have caused much outrage among tyggers. Given England’s poor results in the World Cup and previous allegations concerning prostitutes and infidelity, it is questionable whether Rooney’s reputation will recover this time around. Watch this space.

Related story: Extra-marital matches - 53% agree allegedly unfaithful footballer Wayne Rooney should play in tonight’s qualifier

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