PAOLO DI CANIO says it is impossible for his training regime to go overboard during pre-season.
Sunderland’s players landed back in England this morning after a draining week-long stay in Hong Kong, with Di Canio’s men due to resume training at the Academy of Light on Wednesday.
After overseeing a 10-day boot camp in Italy earlier this month, Di Canio continued to work his players hard in the Far East, with daily double training sessions – plus two games on the dreadful Hong Kong Stadium pitch.
But Di Canio says his players cannot do enough at this stage of the campaign, as he attempts to fine-tune their fitness for the start of the Premier League in 19 days time.
Di Canio said: “Is it possible to over-train players? At this stage, no.
“I found with some players last year that they were under-training.
“It is not at the end of the season where you have played many games.
“It is only the beginning and they’ve come from 40 days off so you can’t over-train.
“We have to be careful because we have the plan with our fitness coach.
“But we know that we can pay the price now because we want to be sharp.
“It’s obvious that when we start the season officially after one or two games, we can use our energy in the right way.
“You have to fight sometimes with your demons because if you didn’t have this habit before, the brain thinks ‘what is going on?’.
“But it is important that we are sharp in 19 days time.”