Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Shearer: Rooney's Ban Is a Huge Blow

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Shearer: Rooney's Ban Is a Huge Blow

Article excerpt

Byline: Martyn Ziegler

ALAN Shearer last night admitted Wayne Rooney's three-match ban was a huge blow to England's Euro 2012 chances.

Fabio Capello's worst fears were realised last night when Uefa handed Wayne Rooney a three-match suspension that will see him miss all of England's group games.

Rooney's kick at Montenegro's Miodrag Dzudovoic last Friday was judged "an assault" by Uefa's control and disciplinary panel, who stuck to the letter of the law in handing out the punishment despite a plea for leniency from the Football Association.

It means Capello now has to judge whether to take Rooney as part of his squad to Poland and Ukraine, and hope that he can make an impact if England make it through to the quarter-finals.

The FA will wait for the full reasons behind the decision before deciding whether to appeal. The ban could even be increased by an appeal panel, but that would be unlikely and it looks odds on that the FA will try to have the suspension reduced.

The Manchester United striker is understood to be extremely disappointed in the outcome but will follow the FA's advice about any appeal.

Former England striker Shearer described the ban as "a huge blow" to England's chances in the European Championships, and called the kick "a silly error".

Newcastle United legend Shearer told BBC Radio 5 Live: "It's a huge blow. It's not only a huge blow to the team, to the fans and to football followers, but to Wayne himself because he realises he's made a stupid error.

"I still think whoever replaces him in the team, England still should have enough to get through the three games without him."

Phil Neville, Rooney's former teammate for Man United and England, labelled the ruling "a joke".

The Everton midfielder said on Twitter: "Rooney banned for three games - what a joke - if it was a Dutch, Spanish, Italian or German player they wouldn't even get one game - fact. …

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