Thursday Kickoff: Rooney ban reduced, Sevilla eyeing Dos Santos and more

Thursday Kickoff: Rooney ban reduced, Sevilla eyeing Dos Santos and more

International Soccer

Thursday Kickoff: Rooney ban reduced, Sevilla eyeing Dos Santos and more

Wayne Rooney 1 (Getty Images)

By FRANCO PANIZO

Wayne Rooney will be able to play in group stage of Euro 2012 after all.

Accompanied by England head coach Fabio Capello, Rooney had his three-game ban reduced to two after a successful appeal to UEFA on Thursday. The decision to shorten Rooney's ban, which came as a result of Rooney receiving a red card against Montenegro in a Euro qualifier last month, means he will be eligible to play in England's final group match against Ukraine.

The English striker did not get away scot-free, however. A UEFA spokesman said the ban for the third match will be suspended for four years, and will come into effect should Rooney be sent off in another European match. Rooney has also agreed to do some coaching in the community.

Here are more stories from Thursday morning:

SEVILLA LOOKING TO ACQUIRE DOS SANTOS

Sevilla is hoping to sign Giovani dos Santos during the winter transfer window after failing to do so this past summer. The Spanish club is looking to end dos Santos' inactive spell at Tottenham, but Sevilla sporting director Ramon Rodriguez has admitted the Spurs will need to lower their transfer demands for that to happen. Dos Santos has struggled to find a regular place in Tottenham's rotation, making just 13 league appearances for the club since joining them from Barcelona in 2008.

REYSOL WINS AS CLUB WORLD CUP KICKS OFF

Japanese champions Kashiwa Reysol opened the 2012 FIFA Club World Cup in Japan with a 2-0 victory over New Zealand's Auckland City. Junya Tanaka and Masato Kudo each scored in the first half of the game as the hosts cruised to victory. The result means Reysol will face Mexican club Monterrey in the quarterfinals this weekend.

JENAS OUT FOR THE SEASON

On-loan midfiedler Jermaine Jenas will miss the remainder of Aston Villa's season as he recovers from the Achilles injury sustained during the club's 1-0 loss to Manchester United last weekend. Jenas underwent successful surgery on Wednesday and his timetable for recovery is six months, meaning he's played in his last Premiership game this campaign. The injury is also likely to cost him a place in England's Euro 2012 team.

JURCIC FIRED AFTER EMBARRASING LOSS

Dinamo Zagreb fired head coach Krunoslav Jurcic immediately following the club's humiliating 7-1 loss to Lyon in the Champions League on Wednesday. Jurcic had helped Dinamo to its current first place in the Croation League (Prva NHL), but the humbling result to Lyon was deemed enough of a reason to let him go. Dinamo will search for Jurcic's replacement in the coming weeks.

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Think Rooney's ban being reduced to two games is fair? Hoping Tottenham raises the price on dos Santos? Was it the right call to let go of Jurcic after the demoralizing defeat?

Share your thoughts below.

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