Getting back on that unicorn! England footballers bring back inflatables made famous during the World Cup for swimming pool race
- Declan Rice and Ben Chilwell raced around the pool on large inflatable unicorns
- Comes after pictures emerged of other England stars doing the same in June
- Rice looked happy after he was forced to apologies for ‘Up The Ra’ comments
England stars have again been pictured warming down in the strangest way – by prancing around a swimming pool on inflatable unicorns.
Declan Rice and Ben Chilwell raced each other around the pool on the floats during a recovery session at St George’s Park, Burton-on-Trent, following their 5-0 thumping of Czech Republic last night.
It comes after similar pictures showed Jesse Lingard, Jordan Pickford, Harry Maguire and Jordan Henderson on inflatable unicorns after England’s World Cup win against Tunisia in June.
Declan Rice looks happy as he sits on an inflatable unicorn during a recovery session today
Rice and Ben Chilwell race each other on the inflatable unicorns during a recovery session in the pool at England Senior Football Training Camp, St George’s Park National Football Centre
Rice, 20, and Chilwell, 22, looked in good spirits as they smiled and paddled around on the large inflatables as part of a recovery session today.
Swimming and being in the water is seen as one of the best recovery techniques after competition.
It particularly helps ease injuries including back pain, torn ligaments and surgery due to the water supporting body weight and releasing pressure.
The West Ham midfielder made his debut for England against Czech Republic yesterday and played 27 minutes
Dele Alli prepares to throw a ball as he takes part in a recovery session in the pool in Burton-on-Trent today
But the session came after a tough week for Rice which saw a social media post saying ‘Up The Ra’ emerge.
The West Ham midfielder was forced to apologise for the comments posted in 2015 due to the slogan’s link to the IRA.
He wrote on Instagram, ‘My brudda UP THE RA Wait Till We Draw England’ in reply to a post from Manchester City U23 defender and Ireland youth international Tyreke Wilson.
Rice played three games for Republic of Ireland before switching allegiance to England.
He deleted the comment and said: ‘I am aware that a poorly-expressed comment I made when I was a junior player has been circulated on social media.
‘I recognise now that my attempt to show support for my team-mates at the time could be negatively interpreted.
‘While my naive words were not meant to be a political opinion and do not represent who I am, I sincerely apologise for any offence caused.’
He got his first 27 minutes in an England shirt last night and received a positive reaction from the crowd at Wembley despite the comments.
Last year, a petition to have the picture of Maguire riding the inflatable unicorn on the new £50 note got more than 10,000 signatures – with team-mate Kyle Walker backing the idea.
There was a petition to have Harry Maguire riding a unicorn (pictured) put on the new £50 note
Maguire was photo-shopped onto the bank note on Twitter and thousands had signed up
Kyle Walker also posted a picture of himself on a five pound note in the Twitter exchange between the two England stars
The petition read: ‘The Bank of England are redesigning the £50 following the successful redesign of the £5, £10 and £20 notes.
‘None of these notes so far have featured a World Cup semi finalist floating on a mythical creature and in the interests of football’s attempts to come home, who would be more appropriate to feature than Harry Maguire riding an inflatable unicorn?’
Walker tweeted in October: ‘Make it happen England! I’ll be happy on a fiver. Plus a bigger amount needs a bigger head…’
Maguire replied: ‘Can’t even make the new fiver!’
England face Montenegro in the UEFA Euro Qualifiers on Monday.