Mars is standing by Wayne Rooney, Frank Lampard and England's other World Cup flops, with a Christmas Selection box one of the new launches in its festive 2010 range.

Mars hopes to capitalise on its England team sponsorship deal by introducing the England FA selection box to retailers this September and will outline plans to increase household penetration of Mars Christmas products by 5% on last year to 9.9 million households.

Available only in England, the packaging is absent of festive imagery, with Wayne Rooney, Frank Lampard, Shaun Wright-Phillips and Glen Johnson on the front of the pack.

"It is great that we can use the FA link-up on the box it means it's not just reindeers and Santas in the selection box aisle, and enables us to appeal to England's 27 million fans," said Bep Sandhu, trade ­relations manager at Mars.

Despite England's dismal display in South Africa, Mars says it does not expect sales of the selection box to suffer as a result of fans' disappointment.

"I think people will have forgotten about [the World Cup] by then. Not all family members are going to care how England fared. It's a safe product to buy."

Other NPD in the festive line-up includes a regular selection box and a limitededition Red and Green M&M's 'square' tube, supported by a £4m ad spend.

As part of its commitment to reducing packaging, Mars is removing 35% of excess packaging from its confectionery tube range by switching the ­familiar cylindrical tubes with a square format for Christmas 2010. It claims this will save 75 tonnes of card and tonnes of plastic.

"The square format also means you can fit more on a pallet, saving transportation and improving delivery times," added Sandhu.

This year's range will ­feature the return of Galaxy Mistletoe Kisses, although the other piece of NPD launched last year, Maltesers Tree Box, will make way for a regular ­festive Malteser box, which "performs very well at that time of year", said Sandhu.