Football: New defence for Di Canio

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PAOLO DI CANIO has suffered an early setback ahead of his disciplinary hearing over his push on referee Paul Alcock.

The Sheffield Wednesday striker's lawyer, Claudio Men-getti, is in hospital in Frankfurt, Germany, after being injured in a car accident on his way to the airport for tomorrow's hearing in South Yorkshire.

Di Canio will now be represented by Mengetti's partner, Sandro Censi, at Bramall Lane.

"I was in a taxi on my way to the airport and there was a crash," Mengetti said. "There is no problem because my partner will be at the hearing instead. He is very strong in these situations.

"He spent the day in a meeting in Sheffield with the Wed-nesday chairman, David Rich- ards, the secretary of Wednesday, Paolo and Moreno Roggi, Paolo's agent."

Mengetti remains optimistic that the disciplinary committee will be lenient to the Italian and added that his client had been concerned by the health of his daughter, Laura.

"It is very important to be confident. Paolo made a mistake but it was not so bad," Mengetti said. "Paolo is always fighting for his club and, maybe, he was a little nervous because his daughter was ill in Italy."

Meanwhile, the French defender Jean-Guy Wallemme said he has failed to fit in at Coventry City and wants to go back to France for personal reasons. "I want to come back home. Family is the most important thing for me. There is no French school in Coventry and my son is losing time," Wallemme said in yesterday's L'Equipe.

The former Lens captain, who joined the Premiership side in June on a three-year contract, said manager Gordon Strachan understood his motives. "I'm ready to leave and the sooner the better," said Wallemme. He was with Lens for 12 years, playing 320 matches in the French First Division.