• Euro 2012

Rooney not distracted by suspension

ESPN staff
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Wayne Rooney looked relaxed during England's golf day © Getty Images
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Wayne Rooney has promised to be raring to go when he returns from his two-match ban for England's final group game against Ukraine.

Rooney was ruled out of England's first two Euro 2012 games after being sent off against Montenegro last October, but Roy Hodgson still included him in his final 23-man squad for next month's tournament, believing he can still make an impression.

Rooney, 26, discovered he would be suspended for the start of the European Championship several months ago, and insists he has "dealt with" the prospect of missing two matches.

"I've been back among the squad and training the past few days and I feel good," Rooney told Sky Sports. "I've got a good few weeks before I can play so I'll get a good few weeks training in and be ready for that game if I'm needed.

"I've had a long time to think about missing those first games - obviously it's disappointing but it's something that I've dealt with. I'm just looking forward to the first game for the lads and hopefully we can get a good result out of that."

Rooney said he was relieved when Hodgson stated in his first press conference as manager that it was his intention to include the England striker despite the ban.

"Missing the first two games, you never know whether a new manager has got you in his plans or if he wants to have the players who can be involved in all of the games," Rooney said. "It was nice to hear that [Hodgson would pick him] straight away and I could get myself ready and as fit as I can be."

Many of the England players have claimed that Hodgson is much more hands on in training than his predecessor Fabio Capello, and like his team-mates Rooney has been impressed with the new boss.

"I've only been here a couple of days but you can see he's determined to get his message across to us and on the training pitch he's very much a part of every minute of every session he's doing," Rooney said. "It's great to have him on the pitch and pointing out things, which maybe we need that as a squad. Hopefully that will be a big help to us."

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