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Footballer Adam Johnson 'had feelings for 15-year-old girl', court hears

Former Sunderland winger Adam Johnson had "feelings" for the 15-year-old girl he allegedly had a sexual encounter with, a court hears.

Former Sunderland footballer Adam Johnson had "feelings" for the 15-year-old girl with whom he allegedly had a sexual encounter, a court has heard.

The 28-year-old, who has earned 12 England caps, denies two counts of sexual activity with a child under the age of 16.

It has been alleged that the sportsman took part in a sex act with the girl while in his parked car last January.

The jury at Bradford Crown Court heard on Tuesday that Johnson lied to police when he said that he had "no feelings" for the teenage girl.

Johnson's QC Orlando Pownall asked the accused, "No feelings - was that the truth?" to which the footballer replied: "No."

His lawyer then asked: "Why did you not tell the truth?"

"My world was turned upside down," Johnson replied in the stand. "I was trying to play it down as much as I could."

It was revealed in court that Johnson went to his parents' house shortly after being released on bail last March and that was where he spoke to girlfriend Stacey Flounders, who is the mother of his young daughter.

"I can't describe how hard it was, how bad it was for her," Johnson said in court. "I told her everything."

Johnson previously pleaded guilty to one count of sexual activity with a child and a further count of grooming.

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Adam Johnson and girlfriend Stacey Flounders arrive at court on February 10, 2016
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