England manager Roy Hodgson has cited injury as the reason for the abrupt end to Ashley Cole's 100th game for his country.
The match also marked the Chelsea defender's ton of caps for the national side, but Hodgson insists that he was not intending to replace the left-back at the break.
"He was injured, he was feeling his hamstring," said Hodgson.
"He was having treatment during the half-time interval and would have soldiered on, but he was clearly suffering.
"I'm very much aware that the match came in a busy time for the Premier League teams, so I didn't want to take any chances."
Cole made his England debut against Albania in March 2001.