A mug's game? Barack Obama mixed up with Chris Smalling on England merchandise

Barack Obama inadvertently appeared as a member of the England World Cup squad. Credit: Wholesale Clearance UK

Although World Cup years are renowned for surprise inclusions in the England football squad, fans were probably not expecting to find Barack Obama among Roy Hodgson's selections for Brazil.

An unfortunate company in Dorset charged with finding images of the England squad to stick on some commemorative cups managed to mix up the leader of the free world with England full-back Chris Smalling.

Though there is a passing resemblance between the two men, it remains to be seen how nobody at the design, checking or production phase spotted the error.

The head of Wholesale Clearance UK, the company who have taken on the task of getting rid the error-strewn stock, seemed to find the fiasco pretty amusing.

Baxter also said the staff member responsible had excused himself by claiming to be "not very clued up on football".

Then again, perhaps with his track record of repelling attacks from the opposition and emerging victorious, Mr Obama is the solution to England's defensive problems after all?

(Although judging by this video his balls skills could use some work.)