Di Canio to Stay After All?

Last updated : 14 January 2002 By Mike Reich
Paolo: Look! I'm staying, okay?
Paolo di Canio was last night adamant that he didn't want to leave the club. His gestures at the end of Saturday's home match against Leicester could be taken several ways.

Firstly, and the conclusion that much of the press have come to, is that he was waving good-bye to all the West Ham fans, and went around the ground to get one last cheer from them all.

The other conclusion is that he was saying that he was happy here, everyone loves me, so why should he go? He went round the ground to show how much West Ham meant to him, and that he had every intention of staying.

"I gave my answer on the pitch to the fans. Football is my life. It has given me a wonderful opportunity - and so have the West Ham fans.

"At the moment I do not know what is happening. I have not asked to leave but if the club decide they want to sell me, I will be professional about it. I still want to win things and win them with West Ham but if they decide to sell me, there is nothing I can do about it."

Glenn Roeder, apparently, also wants him to stay: "Paolo was in good form. Of course I would like this to be settled, one way or the other, in the next few days but the ball is still in Manchester United's court.

"Paolo has a God-given talent and he loves this club. On the other hand, you can't blame any player for being tempted if Manchester United come calling. At the moment though, there is nothing new to say. We have rejected United's offer and that's it."

So his manager doesn't want him to leave, and he doesn't want to leave. If he leaves, the blame at Upton Park will rest with one faction: The West Ham Board.