Everton boss David Moyes has described Wayne Rooney's three-match ban for England as a "joke" and feels it is too early to say whether or not the striker should go to Euro 2012.
Rooney's suspension, a result of his sending off for kicking out at an opponent in last week's final qualifying game in Montenegro, was yesterday increased by UEFA from one match to three, meaning he will miss all of England's group fixtures at the finals in Poland and Ukraine next summer.
It has led to debate over whether national head coach Fabio Capello should take the Manchester United man to the tournament at all.
Moyes, who managed Rooney when he was a Toffees player, thinks that is a decision that does not need to be made for some time yet, but he certainly believes the punishment that has been dished out is too harsh.
"I think the three-game ban is a joke," Moyes said today.
"But nevertheless, I don't think you need to make a decision just now.
"We are talking about it, but nobody is going to make a decision about it - there is still about six months until the summer time.
"I'm sure the manager (Capello) won't make a decision until then. You can decide then on a lot of things - the form of other players, the group, your chances of getting through, Wayne's form.
"So it might be better to leave the boy at home and get a good summer. I'm a Scotsman, so I hope he stays at home!"
Asked if he felt Rooney had been made an example of, Moyes said: "Yes, I think everybody wants to pick out Wayne.
"There is no doubting that Wayne shouldn't have done what he did. But I thought they (UEFA) would have near enough let it go.
"Wayne Rooney is one of the biggest players on the world stage - get him involved in the big games.
"If you want to have a big tournament, I think you want people like Wayne Rooney to be there. It wasn't right, but I think the three games is a bit excessive."Reuse content