Adam Johnson tells court 'I was not a good person to Stacey or my daughter'

Adam Johnson.
Adam Johnson.

Former Premier League footballer Adam Johnson has told jurors he is not a "good person".

The 28-year-old, who has already admitted grooming and kissing a girl under 16, began his evidence at Bradford Crown Court today.

Read more on our live bog here

Read more: Senior detective met Sunderland chief executive Margaret Byrne to discuss Johnson allegations after arrest

He stands accused of two more serious counts of sexual activity with a child.

Johnson admitted to jurors that his relationship with girlfriend, whom he has known for around five years, Stacey Flounders was "not good" at the time that the offences are alleged to have taken place.

The winger, who has 12 caps for England, told the court that he was also texting a number of women in their 20s at the same time and that the messages were "more explicit".

He said: "I had been speaking to people who I shouldn't have been speaking to and not being a good person to [Stacey] or my daughter."

At the time that he and the girl involved in the case got in touch, he "had not envisaged" anything sexual taking place between them - and Johnson added that he didn't see anything wrong with giving her a signed football shirt.

Throughout the trial, jurors have been told that the complainant is a Sunderland fan, and that she idolised Johnson.

The court heard that Johnson, who has been sacked from Sunderland and had a sponsorship deal with Adidas terminated, knew that the girl was under 16 - and were also told earlier in the trial that he had carried out a Google search for the legal age of consent.

Today, in evidence, Johnson claimed that he and some teammates from Sunderland had been having a "discussion" about legal ages around the world, following a programme that had been aired.

He continued: "There are lots of players in our team from all sorts of counties and we were having a discussion on laws and rules in different countries around the world."

Johnson also asked the girl when her 16th birthday would be, and asked her not to tell anyone they were speaking.

The footballer said in his own evidence that SAFC were aware that he had kissed the girl "with tongues" - but it was not made clear to the court at which point they knew.

Orlando Pownall QC, defending, asked the dad-of-one about his life as a professional footballer.

Johnson signed professional terms with Middlesborough when he was 17, after leaving school at 15 to go to the club with only four GCSEs.

He signed for Manchester City when he was 21, and moved to Sunderland in 2012 so he could get more "game time".

"I think it's every young boy's dream," Johnson told jurors.

"You get put on a pedestal, you get people screaming your name. It is the best feeling in the world.

"But you get everything done for you and get a lot of things easy."

The footballer also said that he thinks his career slowed" his maturity because there is so much that you don't have to do for yourself.