England manager bans agents as team prepares for World Cup

England’s World Cup team arrives in Miami on Sunday for a week of training and a pair of games at Sun Life Stadium against Ecuador on Wednesday and Honduras on Saturday. Manager Roy Hodgson has banned agents from the training camp to avoid distractions, saying, “when we’re together, it’s England and purely England and we’re not going to combine the two things.”

Summertime is usually ripe with transfer activity, but Hodgson said any calls about transfers would have to happen during free time.

“That doesn’t mean to say that I’ve gone so far as to say that if we’re in Miami and one afternoon a player needs to go for an X-ray or a medical in our free time after training, I’m going to say: ‘No, you can’t do it,’ ” Hodgson said. “What I am saying is that I’m not having agents come in to our training camp, I’m not having players leaving the camp speaking to clubs or agents and I’m not having players leaving the camp to go for medicals.”

Socceroos first

Australia was the first team to arrive in Brazil after a 26-hour journey that required three flights. The Socceroos are based in Vitoria and took Thursday off to stroll on the beach. They were flanked by police, Brazilian media and fans.

“With the police convoy in front of us and all the people on the street stopping, taking photos out of their cars and coming out and dancing and yelling to the bus, I think it just starts to hit you,” midfielder Dario Vidosic said.

“We’re obviously not involved with things of the magnitude of a World Cup every week, but we understand what we need to go through to get our bodies right and to be mentally and physically fully prepared. So come [June 13,] we’ll be fit and firing.”

Australia plays Chile on June 13, Netherlands on June 18 and Spain on June 23.

White out

Defending champion Spain was ordered by FIFA to make a new white uniform for its opening game against the Netherlands. The red shirts were deemed to not offer enough contrast to the Dutch away blue uniform.

Spain’s clothing supplier, Adidas, said: “FIFA has expressly mandated” it to supply Spain with a third, white kit that they must use in their first match in Brazil. FIFA requires teams to have two different uniforms for the tournament — one light, the other dark. Spain was planning to use red for home and black for away.

Portuguese 101

With the World Cup just 11 days away, it’s a good time to start brushing up on our Portuguese. Here are some phrases that could come in handy.

• “Atacante” means forward.

• “Meia” means midfielder.

• “Defensor” means defender.

• “Vencer” means to win.

• “Perder” means to lose.

• “Camisa dez” means No. 10 shirt, worn by playmaker.

Key Dates

Sunday: England national team arrives in Miami.

Monday: FIFA deadline for final 23-man rosters.

Wednesday: England vs. Ecuador, Sun Life Stadium.

Saturday: England vs. Honduras, Sun Life Stadium.

Saturday: USA vs. Nigeria, Jacksonville.

June 9: Ghana vs. South Korea, Sun Life Stadium.

June 12: World Cup opener, Brazil vs. Croatia, Sao Paulo.

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