Russell Gibbs, 48, (pictured) was dumped by Gareth Southgate's future wife so that she could date the England boss
A man dumped by Gareth Southgate's wife so that she could date the England boss says he bears no grudge and will be cheering England on tomorrow - just like the rest of the country.
After MailOnline tracked down Russell Gibbs to his smart semi-detached home in south London, he revealed he had long-forgotten the betrayal.
England manager Southgate, 47, told in his autobiography how, as a young Crystal Palace player in the 1990s, he spotted his future wife Alison working at a boutique but was too shy to ask her out - and she was already living with her then-boyfriend.
But not before meeting Southgate for secret dates behind Mr Gibbs' back in a Tesco car park as their clandestine relationship developed.
Now Mr Gibbs, who has never spoken of the broken romance with Alison, says he has rebuilt his life and is himself a happily married man with his own family and a fervent England fan.
Speaking from his plush family home on a tree-lined road near Bromley, he told MailOnline: 'Good luck to Gareth and good luck to Alison. It was all a long time ago.
'I am now very happily married myself with two kids and a great wife. Of course I will be support the England team and Gareth on Saturday. I wish the team and Gareth and Alison nothing but the best.'
Gareth Southgate and his wife Alison married in 1997 at the Parish Church of St Nicholas, Worth, Crawley, West Sussex. Southgate 47, told in his autobiography how, as a young Crystal Palace player in the 1990s, he spotted Alison working at a boutique but was too shy to ask her out - and she was already living with her then-boyfriend
Southgate, 47, shared a tender embrace with his wife of two decades Alison, 51, whose off-pitch support the manager has credited with keeping him grounded
Southgate was in his early 20s and a trainee at Crystal Palace when he fell for Alison, a pretty boutique assistant almost four years his senior.
But she was four years his senior and he describes in his book his comical and naive efforts to woo the woman he would later married.
He admits he would loiter around her shop pretending to be browsing clothes and it took the help of a nearby restaurant owner he knew to act as a go between.
Having been teased for his prominent nose, he was so unconfident of his looks that it took him about two years to ask her out.
When he finally did, she told him she was living with someone. In his book, Southgate recalls how he