The Manchester United defender is pictured wearing what appears to be a suicide bomber outfit while attending a fancy dress party over the Christmas period.
Smalling is pictured in a split front page on The Sun newspaper under the sub-headline ‘loser’ alongside ‘winner’ Thomas Hitzlsperger, the former Aston Villa and Germany midfielder, who publicly announced he was gay yesterday.
TODAY’S front page of THE SUN pic.twitter.com/PdbJYFjXkZ
— The Sun Newspaper (@TheSunNewspaper) January 9, 2014
The Manchester United and England defender is pictured wearing what appears to be a suicide bomber outfit at a private fancy dress party hosted by himself and his girlfriend over the Christmas period, an outfit Smalling has since apologised for and insisted that it is a Jagerbomber outfit, consisting of bottles of Jagermeister and cans of Red Bull rigged up in the style of a suicide bomb.
Smalling apologised through his management company, Wasserman Media Group, who released a statement saying: “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.
“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 ‘Jagerbomb drink’.
“Although he fully accepts in hindsight it was an ill-thought out and insensitive decision, absolutely no harm was intended whatsoever and he apologises for any offence caused.”
While Smalling may have intended no harm and the function was private, footballers that enjoy a profile as high as Smalling does should know that there is always a chance they will be photographed on occasions like this and that it doesn’t take much for those photographs to make their way into the public domain.
Manchester United have so far declined to comment on the matter.