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Time will tell
PAOLO Di Canio has set his Swindon Town side the target of occupying a top-eight position by the beginning of October, by which time he expects his squad to be firing on all cylinders.
With five new faces arriving in the final 48 hours of the summer transfer window, and with several key players currently recovering from injuries, Di Canio does not yet have all his options available as he looks to mastermind a second successive promotion.
However, he feels that by the start of next month he will have all his resources at his disposal, and the Town boss wants the Robins to keep themselves within touching distance of the promotion picture until then.
“It will take another month because the players we’ve got in here in the friendly games didn’t make me enjoy Bayern Munich, Crystal Palace and Supermarine,” he said.
“They were under me 45 days - full immersion morning, afternoon - now we have four players who joined us five days ago and we have half-an-hour tactical.
“It’s my job but maybe it takes longer to release the different ideas in football that maybe they had until a few days ago. So the people have to be patient.
“When (Matt) Ritchie is back, Gary Roberts back, all the players back and the new players in 20 days’ time at the end of September, beginning of October - like last year - we will start to see the real potential.
“If we win Saturday we are maybe top three. We have to think like last year in this moment. We have to stay in the top eight in October and November.
“I don’t want to say play-offs, top eight like last year - same thinking, same idea. Seven points from the top top two, maybe two points inside the play-offs or two points from the play-offs and be there with 35 games to go would be good.
“Last year we anticipated this and this time I am sure we can do the same. But I want to have back Ritchie, Gary Roberts and all the five who after one month will understand what I want, and then we are going to have another season as protagonists - listen to me.”