From a TV presenter who married her interviewee to the wife who dated her husband’s manager, the glamorous Scotland and Northern Ireland WAGs who will be cheering on the teams in the Euro 2020 play-off finals tonight
- Scotland and Northern Ireland are both playing Euro 2020 play-off finals tonight
- Teams will be cheered on by their families, including their wives and girlfriends
- Among the number is a trainee solicitor and a skincare entrepreneur
- Many of the players have been with their other-halves since school
Scottish and Northern Irish football fans are eagerly waiting to see if their nations will qualify for Euro 2020.
Both teams are just one step win away from a place at next summer’s delayed tournament. Scotland face Serbia in Belgrade in their play-off final. If they win, the team will qualify for their first major men’s tournament since the 1998 World Cup.
Northern Ireland host Slovakia and are aiming to reach a second European Championship, four years after their debut appearance in the competition.
While the stakes might feel high for the fans, it is nothing compared to the nerves and anxiety that the players will be experiencing in the final hours before the match.
Fortunately, they can count on the support of their friends and family to cheer them on no matter what the score. Front and centre are their proud wives and girlfriends, many of whom have been by their sides since secondary school.
Among their number is a trainee solicitor, a skincare guru and a high-flying banker.
Although the team lists for tonight have not yet been announced, here are some of the women expected to be cheering on their partners in tonight’s matches…
RYAN JACK’S WIFE: ASHLEIGH JACK
Glamorous: Aberdeen-born Rangers star Ryan Jack, 28, shares two daughters with his jewellery designer wife, Ashleigh. Pictured, Ashleigh strikes a pose on Instagram
Childhood sweethearts: The couple (pictured on holiday) first met aged 16, shortly after leaving school, and were together for seven years before the footballer popped the question
Ryan Jack in action for Rangers in October 2019. He is expected to play for Scotland tonight
Aberdeen-born Rangers star Ryan Jack, 28, shares two daughters with his jewellery designer wife, Ashleigh.
The couple first met aged 16, shortly after leaving school, and were together for seven years before the footballer popped the question.
They tied the knot in a stunning ceremony at Meldrum House Country Hotel & Golf Course, in Aberdeenshire, in the summer of 2017.
Although they waited to exchange vows, Ashleigh had no doubt from early on in their relationship that Jack was ‘the one’.
Their eldest daughter, Madison, was born before their wedding, and they welcomed daughter Camdyn in May 2018.
Ashleigh boasts 14,200 Twitter followers and a further 5,000 on TikTok. She often uses her social media following to promote charitable causes.
Recently Ashleigh launched her own jewellery line, ARO & CO, which offers 925 Sterling Silver and Gold Plated Jewellery.
STUART ARMSTRONG’S GIRLFRIEND: SOPHIE HOFFORD
High flyer: Born in Inverness, 28-year-old Southampton midfielder Stuart Armstrong will be cheered on tonight by his girlfriend Sophie Hofford, a trainee solicitor
Low profile: Unlike the partners of some footballers, Sophie prefers to keep a low profile on social media and keeps her Instagram account private. These photos were shared by Stuart
Globe-trotters: The couple on a visit to Iceland earlier this year, before lockdown hit
Scotland’s Stuart Armstrong in action during the UEFA Nations League match between Scotland and Israel
Born in Inverness, 28-year-old Southampton midfielder Stuart Armstrong will be cheered on tonight by his girlfriend Sophie Hofford.
Sophie, who holds degrees from the University of Aberdeen and the University of Edinburgh, is a trainee solicitor.
During her time at Aberdeen, Sophie was given an award in recognition of her ‘excellent dissertation’.
Unlike the partners of some footballers, Sophie prefers to keep a low profile on social media and keeps her Instagram account private.
But proud boyfriend Stuart occasionally gives fans a glimpse into their private life together, including snaps from a holiday to Iceland earlier this year.
In June the couple celebrated Sophie’s birthday with a glass of bubbles – with Stuart marking the occasion in an Instagram snap.
LYNDON DYKES’ WIFE: VICTORIA THOMSON
Loved-up: Australian-born footballer Lyndon Dykes and his now wife Victoria share a happy life together – but it hasn’t always been smooth sailing. Pictured, the couple on Instagram
Unusual start: When they first met, Victoria was with Jim Thomson, the father of her two daughters, who was Dyke’s manager at Dumfries football club Queen of the South, where he had previously played. Pictured, Lyndon and Victoria pose for an Instagram snap
Sun-seekers: The couple soak up the sun as they relax together on a summer holiday
Lyndon Dykes celebrates scoring his side’s first goal of the game against Slovakia last month
Australian-born footballer Lyndon Dykes and his now wife Victoria share a happy life together – but it hasn’t always been smooth sailing.
When they first met, Victoria was in a relationship with Jim Thomson, the father of her two daughters, who was Dyke’s manager at Dumfries football club Queen of the South, where he had previously played.
After Victoria and Thomson split, she and Dykes started dating. The couple, who have a 13-year age difference, welcomed a son, Tiime, in 2018.
One source told the Scottish Sun at the time: ‘Everyone was talking about Lyndon getting together with Victoria after Jim’s connection with the club.
‘It’s a strange one and there had been lots of rumours. There’s obviously a big age difference, but they’ve had the baby and they seem happy.’
It later emerged Dykes had stayed with the couple in 2016, while Thomson was manager at the club.
However any cloud over their relationship has long since disappeared and the couple now share a happy family life with their son and Victoria’s two daughters.
Dykes clearly adores his wife. In an Instagram post shared in July, he wrote: ‘Happy Birthday to my beautiful wife. You are amazing. The kids & I love you millions.’
ANDY ROBERTSON’S GIRLFRIEND: RACHEL ROBERTS
Daddy’s fan club: Scotland captain Andy Robertson, 26, has his own mini fan club in the form of his girlfriend Rachel Roberts and their children, Rocco, three, and Aria, who is almost two
Glamorous: Andy Robertson and Rachel Roberts during the 2019 PFA Awards at the Grosvenor House Hotel, London, last year. Robertson plays club football for Liverpool
Liverpool star Andy Robertson is expected to captain Scotland this evening
Scotland captain Andy Robertson, 26, has his own mini fan club in the form of his girlfriend Rachel Roberts and their children, Rocco, three, and Aria, who is almost two.
The couple met as teenagers while they were both students St Ninian’s High School, Giffnock, in East Renfrewshire.
‘Rachel was the year below me in school [near Glasgow], but we hung about with the same friends,’ Robertson has said of the early days of their relationship. ‘We got together when I was 19.’
They welcomed their son, Rocco, in 2017, and proud father Robertson said at the time that Rachel had taken to motherhood like a ‘duck to water’.
Daughter Aria arrived in January 2019. There are reports that the couple are engaged but that has not been confirmed.
In 2018 the family moved to England when Robertson signed for Liverpool.
Rachel is now friends with fellow Liverpool WAG and Little Mix star Perrie Edwards, who is dating Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.
STEPHEN O’DONNELL’S WIFE: KELLIE O’DONNELL
Family time: Motherwell defender Stephen O’Donnell shares a son, Cillian, with his wife Kellie, who works in Investment and Wealth Management for Barclays
Scotland’s Stephen O’Donnell in action with Israel’s Hatem Elhamed last month
Motherwell defender Stephen O’Donnell shares a son, Cillian, with his wife Kellie, who works in Investment and Wealth Management for Barclays.
The 28-year-old revealed earlier this year that having more time with his young family was one of the benefits of lockdown.
‘I’m enjoying getting to spend a lot of time with my wee boy, we’ve been floating about the house, really,’ he said in an interview with Glasgow Times.
‘It’s great to see him so much because normally you’re always thinking about having to train or “no I can’t do that because I need to go to the gym”. It’s good just to get time alone where it’s just myself, him and Kellie.’
The couple married in a stunning ceremony in 2017. Kellie prefers to be a quiet presence of social media and has a private Instagram and Facebook.
JONNY EVANS WIFE: HELEN McCONNELL
Stealing a kiss: Northern Ireland’s Jonny Evans receives a kiss from his wife Helen McConnell after a game at Euro 2016
High profile pair: One of the most high profile football couples in Northern Ireland, Jonny Evans and Helen McConnell have been married for seven years. Pictured, in 2013
Workplace romance: Evans, 32, met McConnell while he was a player at Manchester United and she was a presenter for the club’s official TV channel, MUTV. Pictured at an event in 2012 (right) and at their 2013 wedding (left)
Jonny Evans of Northern Ireland during the EURO Qualifier match between Northern Ireland v Holland in November last year
One of the most high profile football couples in Northern Ireland, Jonny Evans and Helen McConnell have been married for seven years.
Evans, 32, met McConnell while he was a player at Manchester United and she was a presenter for the club’s official TV channel, MUTV.
The couple, who are both from Belfast, began dating in 2011 and tied the knot at Clough Presbyterian Church in County Antrim, in 2013, with Helen’s father Rev Kenneth McConnell officiating.
Shortly after the wedding, the couple jetted off to Barbados for a honeymoon.
Although University of Ulster graduate Helen once described herself as a ‘lifelong’ Manchester United fan, she has cheered on her husband at West Bromwich Albion, where he played from 2015-2018, and his current club of Leicester City.
Jonny and Helen have a daughter, Lottie, who was born in 2014.
STUART DALLAS’ WIFE: JUNEVE DALLAS
Proud parents: Stuart and Juneve Dallas (pictured last year) share three children
Northern Ireland’s Stuart Dallas runs with the ball followed by Netherlands’ Ryan Babel, right, during the Euro 2020 group C qualifying soccer match between Northern Ireland and the Netherlands last year
Euro 2021 is likely to bring back fond memories for Stuart Dallas and his wife, Juneve.
The couple, who have been together since they were 16, tied the knot in June 2016, just days before he jetted off to France to represent Northern Ireland in Euro 2016.
Leeds United star Dallas, 29, and childhood sweetheart Juneve exchanged vows at the Independent Methodist Church in Dallas’s home town of Cookstown, Co Tyrone.
The newlyweds then headed off in a vintage-style car to the lavish Castle Leslie Estate in Co Monaghan for their reception.
The couple share three children, Pixie, Xavie and Rexie.
Speaking about their time in lockdown, Stuart said he and Juneve were ’embracing’ the challenges it presented..
‘This is what we signed up to, we wanted kids,’ he told the Yorkshire Post. ‘You have just got to embrace it. I don’t think there will ever be another period in your life-time like this – I certainly hope there is not another one like this.
‘I don’t think there will ever been another period where you spend as much time with your family day in, day out. We are stuck in our house, go for our walk and come back in. Kids are kids, they get on your nerves at times, but you wouldn’t have them any other way.’
GEORGE SAVILLE’S FIANCÉE: ROSIE VERO
New mother: Cheering on Middlesbrough midfielder George Saville, 27, will be his fiancée Rosie Vero and their baby girl, Winnie. Pictured, Rosie while pregnant and last year
Growing family: George and Rosie shortly before daughter Winnie’s arrival this summer
Republic of Ireland’s midfielder Conor Hourihane (L) and Republic of Ireland’s midfielder Jeff Hendrick (C) vie with Northern Ireland’s midfielder George Saville in 2018
Cheering on Middlesbrough midfielder George Saville, 27, will be his fiancée Rosie Vero and their baby girl, Winnie.
The couple, who went to school together and started dating five years ago, welcomed their daughter in August and are clearly smitten with their new arrival.
Sharing a photo on Instagram, Rosie wrote: ‘There are truly no words for how I feel about you’, while George added: ‘Welcome to the world! Our little baby girl was born yesterday.. can’t wait to get my girls home.’
Rosie previously worked as a copywriter in Surrey but gave up her job to join George in Middlesbrough.
Last year Rosie launched skincare range Salicin Skincare, which offers everything from hand sanitizer to conditioner.
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