Di Canio takes charge of Sunderland, Miliband leaves in protest
Sunderland have unveiled controversial Paolo Di Canio as their new manager, after sacking Martin O’Neil in the wake of Black Cats’ disappointing 1-0 defeat at the hands of Man Utd.
The defeat left Sunderland just one point above the relegation zone and chairman Ellis Short decided to fire O’Neil as he felt the change was needed. Short believes Di Canio’s passion is what club needs most of all at the moment. He said: “Paolo is hugely enthused by the challenge that lies ahead of him. He is passionate, driven and raring to get started. The sole focus of everyone for the next seven games will be to ensure we gain enough points to maintain our top-flight status. I think that the chances of that are greatly increased with Paolo joining us.
The 44-year-old Italian, who enjoyed colourful career in England playing for West Ham, Charlton and Sheffield Wednesday, began his managerial career with a successful spell at Swindon, leading the club to promotion at the first time of asking. He has signed a two-and-a-half year contract which will keep him at the club until 2016.
However Di Canio’s appointment has been met with a mixed reception among the fans, with the club’s vice-chairman David Miliband resigned over Di Canio’s extreme right-wing views and the fans threatened to boycott club’s games. Miliband said in a statement: “In the light of the new manager’s past political statements, I think it right to step down.”
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