Soccer Aid returns live with Rooney and Allardyce taking on Redknapp and Robson in charity match

A host of famous faces will battle it out on the pitch in the world's biggest charity football match, Soccer Aid for Unicef.

England managers Wayne Rooney and Sam Allardyce will take on Soccer Aid World XI managers Harry Redknapp and Bryan Robson to entertain the nation and raise funds for children's charity Unicef.

Hoping to bolster his England team, 'Big Sam' recruited England Captain Olly Murs to call on his extensive black book of contacts to get him a 'goal machine' to play in the match.

Olly Murs called on celebrities including Olivia Colman, Alan Carr, Joel Dommett, Alison Hammond, Warwick Davis, Steph Houghton, Rylan Clark-Neal, and Dolly Parton to ask if they are keen to join the squad. 

He said: "With everything that’s been happening with coronavirus and not being able to go anywhere in lockdown, being able to see everyone again has been really fun.

"Stepping back out on the football pitch and having everyone together, we feel like kids being let out to go to the park together.

"It feels even more special to be here with everyone and know it is all for such an important cause helping Unicef support children and families impacted by the coronavirus."

'Big Sam' is managing the England team for Soccer Aid. Credit: Soccer Aid/ITV

Expected to play tonight at Wembley, without a stadium audience due to coronavirus restrictions, are John Bishop, Patrice Evra, Paddy McGuinness, Ashley Cole, Iain Stirling, Katie Chapman, Mo Gilligan and Mark Wright.

However, former Manchester City and Barcelona midfielder Yaya Toure who was lined up to play has been dropped from the charity game after sharing an "inappropriate joke".

He was reportedly asked to leave the team hotel after posting content on a group message chat which offended fellow squad members.

Toure has admitted his mistake and regrets the negative publicity which has deflected from Sunday’s fundraising game for children’s charity Unicef at Old Trafford.

“I would like to apologise to everyone involved in Soccer Aid for an inappropriate joke I deeply regret,” he wrote on Twitter.

“It was meant as a joke however I lacked thorough consideration for the feelings of other participants.

“That being said I deleted the jokes within minutes and I immediately apologised to all inside the group.

“We gather for a good cause and this deviates the focus of the game which is to bring everyone together to help children around the world.

“It’s sad to see an inappropriate joke I made attract the attention which should be fully devoted to the beauty of the charity game.

“Regardless of the circumstances, I want to take full responsibility. I am a grown man who should not be engaged in such jokes.

“I am very sorry for my mistake and I wish everyone all the best with Soccer Aid on Sunday in raising awareness and funds for important causes.”

  • Soccer Aid for Unicef airs tonight from 6.30pm, live on ITV.