Adam Johnson admits he "manipulated" girlfriend

The 28-year-old denies two charges of sexual activity with a child under 16

Adam Johnson admits he "manipulated" girlfriend

Image: Peter Byrne / PA Wire/Press Association Images

Footballer Adam Johnson, who is on trial for alleged sexual activity with a 15-year-old, has told the court he was manipulative and lacked integrity.

The ex-Sunderland player admitted manipulating his girlfriend by hiding messages to and from his accuser.

"Would you say it demonstrates a complete lack of integrity," prosecutor Kate Blackwell QC asked.

"Yes," Johnson replied.

Johnson was giving evidence for a third day at Bradford Crown Court.

The 28-year-old denies two charges of sexual activity with a child under 16.

He has admitted a similar charge and a charge of grooming.

During Wednesday's cross-examination Johnson was also asked about his request for a naked picture of the girl.

He confessed to having wanted to see her naked, prompting Ms Blackwell to ask: "You didn't care how old she was, did you?"

"Not at the time," Johnson said, adding that he felt "absolutely awful" about his actions.

The footballer admits kissing the girl, but has denied that more serious sexual conduct took place.

Earlier he discussed the impact the charges have had on his career, saying his former teammates had taken "a step back" from him.

The court heard that the £60,000-a-week winger was first told that his contract with Sunderland had been ended by his father, who received a phone call from the club.

Johnson said he later received a "one or two-line" email from Sunderland, notifying him of their decision.

Ms Blackwell put it to him that: "Some people may feel sorry for you because you have thrown away your glittering career.

"The position you are in now was a direct result of your excessive arrogance," she said.

"I would say more stupidity," Johnson replied.

The trial continues.