Liverpool winger Raheem Sterling claiming that he was too tired to start England’s game against Estonia on Sunday has been hitting the headlines.
Before the Euro 2016 Group E qualifier at the A. Le Coq Arena in Tallinn, England manager Roy Hodgson claimed that the 19-year-old had told him during Saturday's training session that he was ‘feeling a little bit tired’ (click here to read more).
The startling revelation has been a major talking point in English football this morning, and former England international Rio Ferdinand has now given his take on the issue.
Sterling - tired, fair play to him. English players are normally too proud to do that unlike our foreign friends. #FreshWhenItMattersMost— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) October 13, 2014
For instance, Tevez would come in some days and sit on the massage bed while the team trained..."I'm tired"..match day - firing & energised— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) October 13, 2014
Either some real dumb heads on here or they just missed the point totally. Doing what's better for the team & yourself long term....— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) October 13, 2014
With more rest at the right times throughout seasons Rooney would have gone into tournaments for England fresher 100%.... Too proud again.— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) October 13, 2014
Same could be said of Gerard, Lampard, JT, A.Cole myself etc-all too proud to sit out of training or a match with the bigger picture in mind— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) October 13, 2014
Going by many of the responses on here - because players earn a fortune they cannot get tired leave off!!— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) October 13, 2014
Former Manchester United centre-back Ferdinand, who is now on the books of Queens Park Rangers, seems to be defending Sterling, and his argument cannot be dismissed.
England were heavy favourites against Estonia and Hodgson could afford to leave Sterling out of his starting line-up.
Sterling has played loads of football since last season and needs to take a break in order to avoid burnout in the latter stages of the season.
What has to be questioned is Hodgson’s revelation that it was Sterling who did not want to play for England on Sunday. The Three Lions boss should have kept it ‘in-house’ and not made it public.