I’m a WAG and World Cup veteran – I know exactly how England’s other halves can deal with Qatar’s ruinous rules

    I’M usually a firm believer that rules are made to be broken.

    But the strict list of World Cup dos and don’ts issued by England chiefs to this year’s Wags are not to be trifled with.

    Lizzie Cundy at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa

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    Lizzie Cundy at the 2010 World Cup in South AfricaCredit: Paul Edwards – The Sun
    The likes of Sasha Attwood, Jack Grealish’s girlfriend, should be looking forward to the World Cup and all the glitz and glamour that comes with it

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    The likes of Sasha Attwood, Jack Grealish’s girlfriend, should be looking forward to the World Cup and all the glitz and glamour that comes with itCredit: Louis Wood News Group Newspapers Ltd

    Our girls have been warned that if they put a stiletto-clad foot wrong in strict Qatar, they could end up in prison.

    My heart goes out to them, because they’ve been issued with a manifesto for party poopery.

    No booze, no skimpy outfits, no PDAs, no singing in public and even no selfies, at least not outside official buildings.

    The Wags simply won’t know what to do with themselves.

    Have 2022 host nation Qatar ever qualified for the World Cup before?
    England's Wags given strict rules to follow to avoid World Cup crisis

    The likes of Sasha Attwood, Jack Grealish’s girlfriend, and her fellow England Wags should be looking forward to the World Cup and all the glitz and glamour that comes with it.

    Instead, they’ll be worrying that they could get in trouble for doing perfectly normal things.

    I’ve been lucky enough to go to two World Cups, Germany in 2006 and South Africa in 2010, and it might sound silly, but I’m not exaggerating when I say the Wags play a huge part in creating the special atmosphere.

    In South Africa I was treated like a superstar. I can hardly tell you what it was like there.

    Most read in The Sun

    I kept thinking, ‘Have they got me mixed up with someone?’.

    The World Cup is meant to be an international party, and we were there to support our boys in the best way we knew how.

    But with the risk of a crisis in Qatar if anyone has too much fun, I think those golden days have come to an end.

    This year’s Wags have been told that public displays of affection, including kissing, will not be tolerated.

    Double whammy

    That’s going to be tough. I remember watching my ex-husband Jason Cundy play for Chelsea and Tottenham, and when you’re watching a game, especially when they score, you leap up and hug.

    You can’t help it, it’s instinct, you do it — these girls want to support their partner and they want to show affection. They want to show passion.

    And if you’re on holiday with your partner, you are just openly affectionate without even thinking.

    In fact, we’ve seen a few of the players be affectionate with the wrong person, so it’s a double whammy to the loyal partners. Then there’s the rules around wardrobe choices.

    Wags love dressing up and are fully aware that when their partner scores a goal, all the cameras are straight on them.

    We’ve seen a few of the players be affectionate with the wrong person, so it’s a double whammy to the loyal partners.

    They want to look the bee’s knees — clothes are their life and they’ll obviously have got all their outfits ready for the matches. And for the girls to dress modestly? They haven’t got that in their vocab.

    What is modest anyway? I know I’ve been out before and someone has said, ‘Ooh, that’s a bit racy’, and I’m like, ‘Gosh, this is nothing’.

    Will they have to have their skirts below the knee? Will their shoulders be covered? And it’s going to be very hot — are you allowed to go out in a vest top?

    They could get in trouble unless they’ve got a warden or someone there checking them from head to toe with a measuring tape saying, ‘No, that skirt’s too short’.

    For girls used to rightly making their own choices about their own bodies, this will feel so wrong.

    We all know the Wags love a good selfie, as we all do — and Qatar is a beautiful place — so taking a selfie is something these girls will do without even thinking.

    They’ll want to put pictures out there — they’re at the World Cup, it’s the pinnacle of their partners’ careers — but taking a selfie in front of a government building is against the law.

    A World Cup without Wags would be a sad sight

    And we’re not just talking about a slap on the wrist here, this is serious stuff. It can lead to imprisonment, as well as fines.

    Drinking in public, that’s another thing. What if they win and England go through? Are you saying they can’t celebrate with a drink?

    They’re also not allowed to sing — so I can’t imagine how deathly dull the stadiums will sound.

    Like many others, when I watch a football match, I get taken over by someone else and find myself singing my heart out until my throat is hoarse. It’s in you and you can’t stop it.

    All of these rules are going to be broken, probably by accident — and we could see one of our girls actually being put in prison. Footballers’ wives get a really bad rap of being nothing but bimbos who love to shop and get their nails done and are just after the money.

    But they’re not. A lot of them are intelligent women who have careers in their own right. They’re not used to being told what to do. They are strong, independent women who set their own rules.

    f I were them, I’d make a stand against these regressive regulations and say, ‘We’re not going to go’. A World Cup without Wags would be a sad sight.

    But after all the support they’ve given their partners, the Wags should expect to have their support in taking a stand, too.


    Lizzie’s 8 best Wag moments

    Like The Beatles

    Victoria , left, and Coleen, centre, are joined by a pal, Michael Owen’s wife Louise, second right, and Frank Lampard’s then fiancée Elen Rivas, right, in Baden-Baden

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    Victoria , left, and Coleen, centre, are joined by a pal, Michael Owen’s wife Louise, second right, and Frank Lampard’s then fiancée Elen Rivas, right, in Baden-BadenCredit: Associated Newspapers

    I WILL never forget that first moment of seeing the Wags walking together in a line in Baden-Baden during the 2006 World Cup in Germany.

    It was like The Beatles had come to town when Victoria Beckham, Coleen Rooney and the gang stepped out.

    Everyone was like, “Wow. Who are they? What are they wearing?”.

    They were everywhere and it was like nothing anyone had seen before. It was a time when the girls were really more popular than the players.

    And England manager Sven-Goran Eriksson loved it, because the attention wasn’t on the boys.

    They sold more magazines than if you had Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie on the front. I don’t think we’ll ever be seeing anything like that again.

    War of the sunglasses

    You had this hierarchy, with Victoria Beckham, at the top and then Cheryl Cole

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    You had this hierarchy, with Victoria Beckham, at the top and then Cheryl ColeCredit: Alamy

    IT was great seeing the girls watching the games and looking at how big their sunglasses were in 2006.

    You had this hierarchy, with Victoria Beckham, at the top and then Cheryl Cole, because we knew them from the Spice Girls and Girl Aloud.

    Then we had Coleen Rooney, who was new on the block, but you could see she had real star quality.

    It was so fun to see the top girls angling for the best seat, and getting that money shot when their partner scores. Cameras went straight on to them, with their hair immaculate, huge sunglasses and lots of lip gloss. They looked like stars.

    Meeting Mandela

    That’s when I knew the England Wags had actually gone global

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    That’s when I knew the England Wags had actually gone globalCredit: Reuters

    WHEN I met Nelson Mandela at the 2010 World Cup, the former South Africa leader’s first words to me were: “Where are the Wags?”

    That’s when I knew the England Wags had actually gone global. It was something else.

    The new generation

    Rebekah Vardy led the squad of Wags in Russia in 2018

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    Rebekah Vardy led the squad of Wags in Russia in 2018Credit: AP:Associated Press

    At the last World Cup in Russia, in 2018, we saw Rebekah Vardy, leading the squad of Wags, all dressed up to the nines, as they hit the town.

    Unfortunately, Rebekah’s caused quite a stir since then – and I can’t imagine her at the helm of a similar outing now.

    Staying next door to Prince Harry

    Princes William and Harry watch the 2010 World Cup

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    Princes William and Harry watch the 2010 World CupCredit: Reuters

    I WAS staying in the Sun City resort in South Africa, but my friend moved me to another hotel, the Saxton, much to my annoyance.

    However, when I got there, I got the only room left, which was next to Prince Harry, on the top floor with a view.

    I was like, “This is my kind of place!”. At the same hotel I gatecrashed the fanciest cocktail party, with David Beckham, Prince Harry and Prince William.

    Prince Harry’s PR took a look at me and went, “What the hell are you doing here?”, and I was like, “There’s no party without the Cundy – I’m here!”.

    Their faces went pale when they saw me walk in.

    Champagne through straws

    ENGLAND may not have won the World Cup in 2006 but we definitely took the prize for partying.

    Steven Gerrard’s wife Alex Curran was said to have led the karaoke while drinking magnums of champagne through straws with other Wags at nightclub Garibaldi’s. There were also reports of dancing on tables and huge bar bills.

    Queen of the Wags

    Nancy Dell’Olio dated Sven-Goran Eriksson

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    Nancy Dell’Olio dated Sven-Goran ErikssonCredit: BBC

    WHEN I was working for ITV as the Wags correspondent in 2006, I was asked to interview the “Queen of the Wags”.

    I was like, “Who is that?”. Then I get a call from Nancy Dell’Olio, who dated Sven, joking: “Darling, I’m married to the boss. I’m Queen of the Wags!”

    Party bus

    Jordan Pickford’s wife Megan Davidson headed to Wembley for the Euro semi-finals last year on a party bus

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    Jordan Pickford’s wife Megan Davidson headed to Wembley for the Euro semi-finals last year on a party busCredit: Instagram
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    WE know that, given a chance, today’s Wags would be up for a party.
    Goalie Jordan Pickford’s wife Megan Davidson headed to Wembley for the Euro semi-finals last year on a party bus decked out in England flags and balloons.

    It came after England’s first game of the Euros, when Megan donned personalised football shirts and tiny denim shorts, along with Kieran Trippier’s wife Charlotte, Harry Maguire’s fiancée Fern Hawkins, Luke Shaw’s girlfriend Anouska Santos and Kyle Walker’s wife Annie Kilner.

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