In a nod to Mrs Merkel’s domination of the crumbling superstate, the boat was flying a German flag.
The image marks the first since Britain sensationally turned its back on the failing EU following an In/Out referendum in June.
Even though Prime Minster Theresa May will not attend the meeting in Bratislava, there was little doubt that Brexit would overshadow the summit as EU bigwigs scramble to regain trust in the 27-member superstate.
Ahead of the Summit, EU Council President Donald Tusk called for Brussels bosses to take a “sober and brutally honest” look at the bloc’s problems in a statment.
Leading Brussels bureacrat Martin Schluz also waded in, warning Britain to respect EU principles or face tough consequences in the wake of Brexit.
The the EU president snivelled that Britain could not get its way with access to the single market, without accepting freedom of movement rules in the aftermath of the nation’s momentous Leave vote.