Ferdinand defends England winger Sterling

Former England captain Rio Ferdinand has come to the defence of Liverpool winger Raheem Sterling after he was rested for the Three Lions’ win over Estonia having complained of tiredness, the BBC has reported.

Sterling entered the 1-0 victory shortly after the hour with the game goalless, Wayne Rooney’s free-kick eventually delivered the points for Roy Hodgson’s side. Hodgson explained after the match that Sterling asked not to start the game as he was tired, leading to criticism from some quarters and support from others.

“Fair play to [Sterling],” Ferdinand wrote on Twitter. “English players are normally too proud to do that unlike our foreign friends.

“[Carlos] Tevez would come in some days and sit on the massage bed while the team trained [and say] “I’m tired.” Match day – firing and energised.

“With more rest at the right times throughout seasons, Rooney would have gone into tournaments for England fresher, 100%. Too proud again.

“Same could be said of [Steven] Gerrard, [Frank] Lampard, John Terry, Ashley Cole, myself etc – all too proud to sit out of training or a match with the bigger picture in mind.

“Going by many of the responses on here – because players earn a fortune they cannot get tired. Leave off!”

Sterling, having featured for England at the World Cup and played a full part in last season for Liverpool, has thus far played 14 times for club and country, scoring three goals.

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