Four days before Italy’s opening World Cup fixture against England, Mario Balotelli has announced his engagement to his girlfriend, Belgian model Fanny Naguesha, 23.

He proposed to her on Monday, after her birthday party and was thrilled by her response.

Balotelli posted up an image of the engagement ring on Naguesha’s finger with the message : “She said yes.. The most important yes in my life. That was the place of my question (the beach above)! I Love you and happy birthday too! Je t’aime my WIFE.”

 

Naguesha followed this up with a candid photo on her Instagram account of the duo at the beach in Brazil.

“Tonight, I said the most important yes of my life. That was the best present for my birthday! I love you first and unique husband,” she said.

Although the couple had endured some relationship troubles, with Naguesha taking a break from the controversial AC Milan striker at one point, he said in an interview he could “spend his whole life with someone like this.”

Awww, congrats Balotelli and Fanny!

IT’S impossible to avoid the beach when you’re in Rio de Janeiro, and that’s just what a few of the England national players set out to do in the last few days leading to the World Cup.

Daniel Sturridge, along with fellow England stars Chris Smalling, Danny Welbeck and Jordan Henderson, decided to leave their five-star resort occupied by the England FA and took the time to enjoy the ‘Carioca’ way of life instead.

With Roy Hodgson’s squad based at the plush Royal Tulip Hotel near to the city’s famed Ipanema beach, they enjoyed a stroll and swim and even blended in with locals before Liverpool star Sturridge was recognised by several onlookers.

Within several minutes, starry-eyed local Brazilian kids were seen surrounding the players and following their every move excitedly.

Ipanema beach is a famed beach known for attracting both celebrities and locals, and it is one of the city’s most popular hotspots, right alongside the Copacabana and the more quieter Leblon beach.

The England quartet were also mobbed by journalists and TV crews during their time on the beach, who were keen for a quote or two from members of the Three Lions.

After some recreational time well-spent under the sun and acclimatizing to the Brazilian weather, the players headed back to their hotel.

England will fly to Manaus on Thursday ahead of Saturday’s clash with Italy and will hold an open training session for the public at the Urca military base on Monday.

Meanwhile, the German national team were spotted along the beaches of Santo Andre, near a sailing camp on Brazil’s Atlantic coast on Tuesday.

They were there to attend a sailing and motivational ‘workshop’ by South African-born Swiss explorer, Mike Horn, who is a famed explorer and adventurer.

Horn’s previous exploits include a solo circumnavigation of the Arctic Circle and a North Pole expedition.

After inviting the entire German squad onto his ship – the Pangea – Horn gave advice to Philipp Lahm and co’ about the ideals of believing in the power of the human spirit.

Bastian Schweinsteiger

After the workshop, Germany captain Philipp Lahm was impressed, saying it was ‘incredible what the human body can achieve.’

Lahm added : “The presentation showed that we must be well prepared, and have to respect the opponent.”

Bastian Schweinsteiger, who has been linked to a summer move to Man United, was also spotted soaking in the sun aboard the boat.

And with Germany squaring off against Portugal on June 16, they will need all the motivation they can get.