New SAFC manager Paolo Di Canio vows to go on the attack

FORWARD THINKING ... Paolo Di Canio.
FORWARD THINKING ... Paolo Di Canio.

PAOLO Di Canio has promised Sunderland fans attacking football as he bids to steer the club clear of the Premier League relegation zone.

Speaking to SportMail, the Italian explained that his footballing philosophy is all about goalscoring.

And he has promised that his aim is to put Sunderland’s players on the front foot in the remaining seven games – starting on Sunday at Chelsea.

“I played attacking football at Swindon because in my view it is clear that – regardless of whether you want to stay up or whether you want to win the league – you have to score a goal,” he said.

“So here at Sunderland, we have to score goals.

“We can’t look to defend and just HOPE that we score a goal, score the one goal, and then defend all game.”

Di Canio has spent this week at the Academy of Light looking at how best he might get the most out of the squad he has inherited.

Leading goalscorer Steven Fletcher won’t play any further part this season after the ankle injury he picked up on international duty, but the Italian can still call upon Danny Graham, Connor Wickham, Stephane Sessegnon, Adam Johnson and James McClean for creativity and goals.

For the moment, Di Canio is considering making the best use of his wide men by trying to get them further upfield in open play.

“I probably won’t change the formation so much here at the moment because they know the system they are playing,” he said.

“We have very good wingers and we do have a mix of strikers – obviously not all of them because we have injuries – but I do have options to mix things around.

“I will play 4-2-4 when we have possession and I will look to change the mechanics of the side because we do need to improve our attacking options in order to damage our opponents.”