Injuries are mounting for England ahead of their friendly against Brazil at Wembley on Wednesday night.
The Three Lions have a horrendous record against the Samba Kings, who insultingly refer to their regular whipping boys as “customers.”
Under Big Phil Scolari in particular, Brazil have made a habit of vanquishing England. And the Brazil boss will be hoping to start his second stint in charge with another Lion pelt, to add to the ones he collected at three major tournaments in a row between 2002 and 2006.
And England’s task of containing a combative Brazil squad with muscular forwards like Luis Fabiano and Fred, as well as artists like Ronaldinho and Neymar, has been made more difficult due to injury.
Manchester United midfielder Michael Carrick and Spurs striker Jermain Defoe have already been ruled out.
And after his man-of-the-match exploits for Liverpool against Manchester City on Sunday, striker Daniel Sturridge is also a major doubt, having picked up a thigh strain.
England may be ranked sixth by Fifa, with five-times world champions Brazil inexplicably rated the 18th best side on the planet.
But the weakened Lions will surely fear a footballing lesson from Scolari’s Selecao, who are aching to prove they are still a major power, after their pussyfooting under Mano Menezes.