England boss to test out replacements.
Wayne Rooney will be left out of manager Fabio Capello’s England starting line-up in the build-up to Euro 2012 after he was sent off in Montenegro on Friday.
The striker, 25, will definitely miss his side’s first game in the tournament in Poland and Ukraine after kicking Miodrag Dzudovic in the 2-2 draw in Podgorica that confirmed qualification.
And the ban could be extended once European football’s governing body Uefa has studied referee Wolfgang Stark’s report of the incident, despite Capello and the Football Association hoping Rooney will miss only the opener.
He will definitely miss the visit of World Cup holders Spain to Wembley next month, with Capello confirming: “Rooney will not play against Spain – absolutely. I want to test new players, a different style and a new different movement, something different.
“Sometimes he will come on at half-time but not from the start. He will not start. We need to prepare the first 11 who will start the Euros.”
And on the possibility of Rooney actually being sidelined for games once the tournament began, he said: “If they [the other players] are good, they will play. In my life as a manager I have put a lot of players on the bench. I always decided who was the best player for me at that moment, at every moment.”
SOURCE: BBC Sport
This is a fairly sensible approach but clearly the lack of many viable alternatives to the Man United man must concern the England boss who will now have a series of friendlies to test out those he feels can step into the breach.
It seems eminently likely that Wayne Rooney will miss two Group matches because regardless of the striker’s calm reaction to being sent off and indeed his apologies since, he did lash out at an opponent and was given a straight red card and therefore is likely to have to serve the full ban for his offence.