Two Brazil-bound teams – England and Ecuador – played to a 2-2 tie in a pre-World Cup friendly on Wednesday in Miami, but there was hardly anything pleasant about the encounter.
England's Raheem Sterling attempted a blatantly cheap second-half tackle against Ecuador captain Antonio Valencia, and it didn't sit well with the Manchester United winger. He immediately shot up, put his hands on the back of Sterling's neck, and then briefly shook the front of his neck as well.
While the response was over-the-top – both drew red cards as a result – Sterling's tackle was bush league, especially with the World Cup, oh, eight days away.
The point of friendlies is to ratchet up the competition AND to avoid injuries, not to cause them.