England held by Ecuador

Roy Hodgson (Gallo Images)
Roy Hodgson (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - A superb strike from Michael Arroyo ensured Ecuador snatched a two-all draw against England in an international friendly at the Sun Life Stadium in Miami.

There was some controversy in the final 15 minutes of the game as a clash between England substitute Raheem Sterling and Ecuador midfielder Antonio Valencia resulted in red cards for both players.

A wild challenge from Sterling saw Valencia react angrily and push the Liverpool forward, resulting in the referee sending both men off - much to the shock of most inside the stadium.

Neither player will miss their respective team's World Cup opener, however as the one match ban will affect England's last warm up match before the tournament kicks off. 

The opening goal of the match was scored by Enner Valencia (no relation to the man sent off) in just the eighth minute of the first half. 

Winger Walter Ayovi's pinpoint cross found Valencia, who had positioned himself perfectly between Luke Shaw and Chris Smalling and delivered a perfect header to put his side 1-0 up.

Twenty minutes later, England responded through Wayne Rooney, who took full advantage of some chaos inside the Ecuador penalty area to scramble in a very scrappy equaliser.

With the scores tied at half-time, Rickie Lambert struck six minutes after the break to put England 2-1 up, though the goal had been made by Everton midfielder Ross Barkley, who unselfishly laid off to the Liverpool man after weaving his way through a number of Ecuador defenders.

At that stage, England were looking good for the win, but when their defence made the fatal mistake of allowing Arroyo the time to shift the ball to his dangerous right foot just outside the box, he made them pay with a searing strike that evened the scores with 20 minutes left on the clock.

The only notable incident after Arroyo's goal was the double red card, as the two sides played out to a draw that leaves England coach Roy Hodgson with plenty of work left to do before Brazil.

Ross Barkley put in an impressive display while Lambert displayed the killer instinct in front of goal. Arsenal forward Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain limped off near the end of the match to put his participation in Brazil in doubt. 


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