The offensively charged face-off between England and Ecuador ended in a 2-2 draw in rainy Miami at Sun Life Stadium on Wednesday. Both squads started well, and despite two corner kicks early on, England fell behind when Enner Valencia scored a header for Ecuador from Walter Ayovi’s cross in the 8th minute. Ecuador’s defense kept blocking all attempts at a goal, including more corner kicks and some missed shots on goal.
England equalized in the 28th minute when Wayne Rooney tapped the ball in after a questionable handball from Rickie Lambert. The rest of the half saw both sides attacking the goals with some great efforts by both teams and the first half finished with a 1-1 draw.
Ross Barkley set up Rickie Lambert in the corner for an excellent angled shot to help England take the lead 2-1 in the 52nd minute. The possession battle continued until Ecuador seemed to have a break when Jefferson Montero charged at the goal but hit the post, leaving England’s defense looking confused and in a shambles.
Ecuador eventually equalized when Michael Arroyo took a side-step and drilled the ball from 20-yards out past England’s defense, to make the score 2-2 in the 70th minute. England kept their offense up and was defending an Ecuadorian offensive attempt when Raheem Sterling went for a risky slide aiming for the ball but missed both the ball and Antonio Valencia. When Valencia stood up from the brief tumble, he put his hands around Sterling’s throat and both teams rushed to their teammate’s backs. Red cards were eventually handed out to Sterling and Valencia with 11 minutes left to play.
The match ended with both teams playing very well. England’s back-line looks like it needs some work but Wayne Rooney looked to be in fine shape. Both squads gave an intense performance but both need work before heading to Brazil.
England will play Honduras at 4:45pm on Saturday June 7th back in Miami at Sun Life before heading to Brazil while Ecuador is finished with their pre-World Cup friendlies.