Manchester United midfielder and World Cup winning German Bastian Schweinsteiger is reportedly suing a Chinese doll manufacturer after the company appeared to base a replica Nazi soldier on the chiselled looks of the Bavarian footballer.
The 31-year-old, who featured in United's 1-1 draw with CSKA Moscow in the Champions League on 21 October, has instructed lawyers after taking issue with the appearance of the 30cm doll, which bears a striking resemblance to the Germany international and even has a label with "Bastian" inscribed. The toy is from a range that also features tyrannical Soviet leader Joseph Stalin as well as James Bond.
A product description says the doll, which costs £79 ($122) and is manufactured by DiD, is of a member of the Wehrmacht, which consisted of the Heer (army), the Kriegsmarine (navy) and the Luftwaffe (air force) from 1935 to 1946. Reports in Germany claimed DiD representative Patrick Chan said: "We have no figures based on a footballer."
Schweinsteiger was the linchpin for the victorious Germany side that won the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. Before his 2015 summer move to United, he enjoyed an illustrious career at Germany's most successful club, Bayern Munich.
In 2014, a Polish toy manufacturer vowed to continue selling Nazi-themed games as a way to educate children months after the notorious Nazi-hunting Wolfenstein video game series was released in Germany.