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Last Updated: Wednesday, 21 December 2005, 17:45 GMT
Hislop unable to forgive Di Canio
Shaka Hislop
Paolo was certainly someone I considered a friend who I liked a lot, so I am very disappointed
Shaka Hislop
Shaka Hislop has hit out at his former team-mate Paolo di Canio after the Italian was fined for showing a fascist salute while playing for Lazio.

Hislop said their friendship was over after Di Canio made the gesture in a game at Livorno and has not apologised.

Hislop said: "Paolo never impressed me as that kind of person when he was here at West Ham.

"When it is someone you thought was a friend it has a longer-lasting effect. I am very disappointed by it."

Di Canio was suspended for one match and fined for aiming the salute at supporters, which he insists has "nothing to do with political ideologies."

"I will always salute that way because it gives me a sense of belonging to my people," he said recently.

But Hislop is disgusted by Di Canio's explanation for his straight-armed salute.

He said: "He got on well with my wife and my kids and to see him making headlines for his actions disappoints me greatly because of what those gestures mean and the wider effect of it.

"Paolo was certainly someone I considered a friend who I liked a lot, so I am very disappointed."

Di Canio was backed by Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, who believes the 37-year-old striker is simply misunderstood.

He said: "Di Canio is an exhibitionist. His salute didn't have any significance. He's a good lad."

Interview: West Ham goalkeeper Shaka Hislop



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