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Di Canio: Foreigners can help

Paulo Di Canio has hit back at Greg Dyke's claim that foreign influence in English football is having drastic effects on the national team.

Last Updated: 06/09/13 at 18:09 Post Comment

Paolo Di Canio: Sunderland manager sees the positives of foreign influence

Paolo Di Canio: Sunderland manager sees the positives of foreign influence

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Football Association chairman Dyke sparked huge debate earlier this week when he expressed his fears for the future unless drastic steps were taken to nurture more English talent.

The former Director General of the BBC laid out his vision to improve football in England at a keynote speech in London, but in targeting a World Cup victory in Qatar in 2022, he made it clear that the Premier League and the FA must work together to cut the percentage of foreign players, managers and owners.

And Dyke said the FA would be "letting the country and thousands of England fans down" if it did not deal with what he called a "frightening trend" which last season meant just 32% of players used by Premier League clubs were English.

But Sunderland's charismatic Italian manager told the Sunderland Echo that imports can help rather than hinder the national side.

"I do not agree that a big foreign influence in the English game is a bad thing," said Di Canio.

"I can sympathise with those that do, but I also feel that there is a lot of benefit that English football can get from being exposed to footballers and managers from abroad."

Di Canio has brought no fewer than 14 overseas players into his squad for the 2013/14 season as they look to improve on last year's campaign which saw them fighting relegation until the final weeks.

He continued: "Better footballers from abroad can help raise standards in England, in my opinion, and the same goes with managers from abroad who bring fresh techniques and ideas.

"If English players buy into the those techniques and ideas that are used regularly abroad, and with a lot of success, then maybe they will not go out of tournaments in the early stages of them."

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