Former Manchester City goalkeeper Carlo Nash has been cleared of stalking his ex-wife.
Nash, 41, was formally found not guilty at Chester Crown Court after the prosecution offered no evidence to put before the court.
Nash, who also played for Stoke and Preston, smiled and nodded from the dock as his trial - scheduled to begin today - was aborted.
He had been accused of a single count of stalking his former wife Jill, under the Harassment Act, between January 2013 and August 2014, as the couple's marriage failed.
Nash had allegedly accessed her emails and social media accounts, entered her house without consent, accessed her computer and redirected and opened her mail.
But at a brief hearing on the day his trial was due to begin, Simon Parry, prosecuting, told the court the allegations were set amidst the "acrimonious break-up" of the couple's marriage, involving both financial and childcare arrangements over their two children as they divorced.
He said the prosecution had today been provided with a "certain amount of material" by the defence which the prosecution "ought to be aware of".
Parry said further "evidential difficulties" raised questions over whether the case had a realistic prospect of conviction and whether it was in the public interest.
He added: "It is the crown's view that this matter should go no further and accordingly I will offer no evidence today."
Judge Nicholas Woodward directed a not guilty verdict be recorded and awarded legal costs to Nash.
Lisa Judge, defending, told the court: "He has strenuously denied these allegations throughout."