FORMER Sunderland manager Paolo Di Canio is looking to get back into management at Championship strugglers Bolton Wanderers.
But the Italian is facing stiff competition to replace sacked Dougie Freeman from Bolton’s academy coach Jimmy Phillips and Southend manager Phil Brown.
National reports say Di Canio - who was sacked by Sunderland last September - is understood to have applied for the vacant job at the Macron Stadium.
He left the Stadium of Light after a turbulent spell in charge which saw him take charge of just 13 matches.
Di Canio’s time at the club was mired in controversy from the day he was appointed manager in March last year, with the alleged political views of the former forward sparking the resignation of club vice-chairman MP David Miliband.
The former West Ham United, Lazio and Celtic striker is also a 50-1 outsider for the vacant manager’s job at Hartlepool United.
South Shields-born Brown, 55, who worked as assistant to Sam Allardyce before going onto manage Hull City and Southend United, is the favourite for the Bolton job.