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The term "footballer's wife" came to be associated with a spouse leading a "high" life of socialising and shopping.

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During the 2006 World Cup the press gave increasing coverage to the socialising and shopping activities of the English WAGs, who were based in the German town of Baden-Baden.

It was frequently suggested that England's exit from the tournament in the quarterfinals was a result of such distractions.

The acronym has since been used by the media in other countries to describe the female partners of sportspeople in general.

It is popular belief that the first recorded use of the term WAG was in 2002: "It was never guaranteed that the wives and girlfriends (or "the Wags", as staff at the Jumeirah Beach Club call them for short) would get along.

Mrs Beckham's tongue, for one thing, has previously run away with itself."), although in such usage "girlfriend" (or "wife") could be interpreted as further denotative specification within the set of people fitting both the denotation and the connotation of "WAG", and increasingly in non-footballing contexts: for example, the first wife of comedian Peter Cook (1937–95) was described as a "Sixties Wag" One can also be "Wagged" This type of acronym is of long standing in British English.

For example, during the Second World War, a series of County War Agricultural Executive Committees or CWAECs was known widely as "War Ags".Victoria Beckham was quoted as saying that she and her husband had "so many wider interests ... I mean you think, yeah, football's great, and singing's great. Former Manchester United captain Roy Keane had lashed out at footballers' wives and girlfriends, as well as their lavish lifestyle, during their trophyless season in 2001–2002.Keane blamed United's loss of form on some of his teammates' fixation with wealth, claiming that they had "forgot about the game, lost the hunger that got you the Rolex, the cars, the mansion." Earlier in the season, Keane had publicly advocated the break-up of the Treble-winning team When Keane became manager of Sunderland A. C, he complained about the difficulty signing players to the city in northeast England, as their wives or girlfriends insisted they only move to teams based in London.WAGs (or Wags) is an acronym used to refer to Wives And Girlfriends of high-profile professional athletes.The term may also be used in the singular form, WAG, to refer to a specific female partner or life partner.The WAGs' activities did however provide a "benchmark" of sorts.

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