Gullit: Rooney must accept Euro 2012 ban

Former Chelsea manager Ruud Gullit says Wayne Rooney must accept the three-match ban which means he will miss all of England’s group games at next summer's European Championships in Ukraine and Poland.

The Manchester United forward saw red in the Three Lions’ final qualifier against Montenegro for kicking out at Miodrag Dzudovic, and although Rooney was widely expected to receive no more than a two-match suspension, UEFA dished out a three-game ban.

The Football Association are still considering an appeal, while the debate goes on over whether Rooney should be selected in Fabio Capello’s 23-man squad.

However, Dutchman Gullit believes that Rooney knows what he has done and he will have accepted the punishment.

"He made a mistake, he has to pay for it," he told Yahoo!

"I don't see why anybody would want to appeal to have it reduced to one game. Why would UEFA do that? Then they would have to do it for everyone else.

"Take it as it is. The boy knows what he did. It's very unfortunate but there is a rule. If UEFA reduce it, everybody will go to them and ask why they should make an exception for Rooney. It would look bad.

"I would not be so harsh on Rooney. It is too easy to attack him. He knows himself what happened, and what he needs to deal with.

“I am still a fan of him, it does not change my opinion  that he is one of the greatest players around."

The 49-year-old also commented on former club Chelsea's potential move from Stamford Bridge to a new stadium, and believes the Blues' hierarchy have a difficult task deciding what is best for the club.

"The problem is the capacity at Stamford Bridge - they can't build more," he said. "At the same time, they need to stay in their local area because that is why they are called Chelsea.

"Where do you have space for a 60,000 capacity stadium in Chelsea? Earl's Court is a possibility, but it's not Chelsea.

"If you are looking to the future it is a good thing to have a bigger stadium and more income - but if you cannot do it in Chelsea then it's a problem.

"It's a good thing that the fans have a say in the matter [through their ownership of the Stamford Bridge pitch] and I hope ultimately they get to decide what happens."

For more insight from Ruud Gullit and other leading managers, plus exclusive Barclays Premier League highlights, visit www.yahoo.co.uk/sport

By Matt Maltby


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