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David Moyes accepts libel damages over Wayne Rooney allegation

Cathy Gordon
Wednesday 04 June 2008 00:00 BST

David Moyes, the manager of Everton, accepted "substantial" undisclosed libel damages yesterday over a "wholly untrue" allegation in Wayne Rooney's autobiography that he leaked details of a confidential conversation with the striker.

Moyes, who sued Rooney, his co-author Hunter Davies and HarperCollins, the publishers of "Wayne Rooney – My Story So Far", also received a public apology at a hearing at the High Court in London.

Edward Parladorio, representing Moyes, told Mr Justice Eady that his client was accused of "a serious breach of trust towards a young player under his management".

He said Moyes was accused of leaking the contents of a confidential conversation, during which Rooney stated his intention to leave Everton "and the city of Liverpool by reason of intense press coverage of his personal life", to a local newspaper.

After the brief hearing, Moyes said in a statement: "Anyone who knows me well would, I hope, regard me as a man of honour and integrity. I was disappointed and wanted people to know that what had been written was completely untrue. I felt that I had no choice but to take action for a full apology and damages.

"Having accepted these, I do not intend to make any financial gain from this and shall give that to the Everton Former Players Foundation. All of the above said, we have now moved on and I wish Wayne and his family all the best for the future both on the field and off it."

Parladorio told the judge there was "no breach of confidence or betrayal of trust by Mr Moyes", adding: "Happily, Mr Rooney, Mr Davies and HarperCollins Publishing Limited appear here today by their solicitor to acknowledge that they were mistaken and publicly withdraw the allegation and apologise."

It is understood to be the first time that a top-flight manager has sued one of his former players for libel.

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