Manchester United footballer Chris Smalling apologizes for suicide bomber costume

Manchester United defender Chris Smalling could feature for England at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

Story highlights

  • Chris Smalling apologizes for dressing as a suicide bomber
  • The Manchester United defender was making a play on the popular "jagerbomb" drink
  • Stoke City's Jermaine Pennant was last week pictured dressed as Osama Bin Laden
  • Smalling is hoping to be part of the England squad for the 2014 World Cup

Manchester United football star Chris Smalling has apologized after pictures appeared in a British newspaper of the defender dressed as a suicide bomber at a private party.

The England international wanted to make a joke based around the popular "jagerbomb" drink by dressing in a costume decorated with empty bottles of jagermeister and cans of the energy drink Red Bull.

"Chris and his girlfriend hosted a fancy dress party to celebrate Christmas and their belated birthdays with close friends in the assumed privacy of his own home," Smalling's management company Wasserman Media Group said in a statement.

"He dressed in a costume consisting of empty bottles of jagermesiter and cans of Red Bull strapped to his chest in an attempted comedy play on the popular 'jager bomb drink'.

"Although he fully accepts in hindsight it was an ill-thought out and insensitive decision, absolutely no harm was intended whatsoever and he apologizes for any offense caused."

Portugal remembers football legend Eusebio
Portugal remembers football legend Eusebio


    Portugal remembers football legend Eusebio


Portugal remembers football legend Eusebio 01:56
Footballer fights back after cancer
Footballer fights back after cancer


    Footballer fights back after cancer


Footballer fights back after cancer 03:15

Smalling, who hopes to be part of the England squad which will travel to Brazil in June for the 2014 World Cup, is not the only footballer to have courted controversy with his choice of fancy dress outfit.

The girlfriend of Stoke City's Jermaine Pennant recently posted a picture of the winger dressed as Osama Bin Laden at a New Year's Eve party.

Outside of sport, Britain's Prince Harry issued an apology in 2005 after he was pictured dressed as a Nazi at a friend's fancy dress party.

Read: Ex-Germany soccer star reveals he's gay

Watch: "Gay slurs scared me"

      Football Focus

    • French football great bids adieu

      After 20 years, more than 300 goals and a host of major honors, Thierry Henry has called time on his glittering football career.
    • Mario's 'Queen' tweet tops 2014 list

      He might be struggling to score goals for Liverpool, but Mario Balotelli's cheeky tweet about the British monarch hit the spot during the World Cup.
    • bpr south african soccor senzo meyiwa death _00000402.jpg

      Loss of a South African 'icon'

      Football world mourns South African captain Senzo Meyiwa who was shot and killed during a botched robbery in a township near Johannesburg.
    • German alleged jihadist Kreshnik B (R) listens to his lawyer Mutlu Guenal (L) as he arrives at the higher regional court in Frankfurt. His face is pixelated for legal reasons.

      From Jewish football to ISIS suspect

      Once part of Germany's largest Jewish sports club, now he's the first ISIS suspect to stand trial in a country left shocked by his alleged radicalization.
    • Where has 'Super' Mario gone?

      One goal in eight matches for new club Liverpool, and dumped by the Italian national team -- Mario Balotelli has yet to shine on his English return.
    • Ched Evans smiles during the Wales training session ahead of their UEFA EURO 2012 qualifier against England on March 25, 2011 in Cardiff, Wales.

      Should rapist return to work?

      Should a convicted rapist, who has served their time in prison, be allowed to resume their old job? What if that job was as a high-profile football player?
    • Teen, 15, makes Euro history

      Norwegian 15-year-old Martin Odegaard is the youngest player ever to feature in a European Championships qualifying match.