Glenn Stays Focused

Glenn Roeder says he will not be deflected in his aims by speculation concerning his players.

Recent stories have included suggestions that Trevor Sinclair was unhappy at West Ham, but the player himself has emphatically denied the claims.

"As far as I'm concerned what Trevor actually tells me is all that matters," says Glenn.

"He has told me he is very happy at the club and wants to continue here, and he is certainly in my plans.

"We certainly came to realise how much we miss him him when he was out for 20 games."

He is also unconcerned by a suggestion that he 'has to decide whether or not to sell Paolo Di Canio to Watford' as one newspaper claimed recently.

"That's just paper talk," responds Glenn, "and some papers are just making mischief between myself and Paolo.

"All I would like from him is when he comes back to pre-season training he  will tell me he wants to continue playing for the club.

"He is one of the best trainers at the club, very professional, and he would agree that he wants to come back to his very best form which at times, and he admitted it last year, he didn't always hit those heights because of his sinus problems. But that now has been operated on."

Paolo suggested last season that some players have to train harder, and it is a notion with which Glenn readily agrees.

"Very much so," he says. "We never go to the bottom of the players' energy reserves in training, so that if they want to do some extra they can do so.

"I certainly like to see players doing a bit extra after training so they can practise their techniques, whether it be juggling with the ball on their own or spreading out in twos or threes and practising their passing techniques.

"There's no doubt about it, you can always improve your technique by practice; you certainly won't by thinking about it.

"I always remember working with Glenn Hoddle and John Gorman in the England set up. A lot of players, and in particular the Manchester United group of lads, always spent another ten or 15 minutes practising after training.

"David Beckham would be practising his free kicks, while Nicky Butt, the Nevilles and Paul Scholes, could have been practising driving the ball across the field or chipping it.

"But they never ever went straight in when it finished, so that is a habit they picked up from working for Manchester United.

"And I think Sir Alex Ferguson said that culture was brought in by Eric Cantona.

"You never go to the bottom of the well in your own session; you always leave a bit for them to work on themselves.

"The good thing about Paolo is that he always speaks his mind; he is a man with lots of opinions and he is prepared to voice them.

"From a manager's point of view I would rather have that because you know where you stand with him.

"What I've said before and I'll say again, you listen to what he says but you don't have to agree with it.

"As far as the training is concerned since he has been at the club, that is his opinion.

"I will add to that that all managers have a different style to their practices and I would imagine that my style will vary slightly from Harry's.

"But we mustn't forget that under Harry we had three seasons on the trot that got us in the top half of the table."

Glenn has still not been able to announce any signings, but says: "Sometimes the progress doesn't seem quick and of course a lot of people are on holiday.

"But the work is ongoing."