Glenn: Paolo Is Fine

Glenn Roeder says Paolo Di Canio can't wait to resume playing in the first team - a declaration that delights the Hammers boss.

"He will have had two more weeks training under his belt by the time we get to Southampton, and he has told me he will be itching to play when he gets the opportunity again; it is good to have someone like Paolo waiting for the chance to play," he says.

Glenn is delighted by Paolo's attitude since returning from Bologna, and he says: "It is good that Paolo is so understanding, and it is what I would expect from such an experienced professional.

"Paolo was fit for the game on Saturday against Sunderland - he had a good week's training.

"He is a very senior professional and understands the ins and outs of football. The team was winning and playing well, and he understood and didn't expect me to change that winning team.

"Consequently, and he has said this, he didn't have a problem not playing against Sunderland - and we won again."

And Glenn reveals the pair had a very constructive meeting last week, adding: "We had a good chat last Thursday about all aspects of football, and it was good to hear that when we want him to go back into the team he is going to be fit and ready to show everybody that he is still the Paolo Di Canio that knocked in six or seven goals earlier in the season."

Competition, says Glenn, is the key, and he says Paolo's erstwhile strike partner Fredi Kanoute cannot expect to walk back into the side either.

"When Frederic Kanoute came on at half time on Saturday you could see how much motivation he had in his body right from the first few seconds," says Glenn.

"He wanted to grab that opportunity with both hands to make sure he gives himself the best chance to start against Southampton."