NEW Sunderland manager Paolo Di Canio would “bet everything” on his ability to keep the club in the Premier League.
The Italian replaced Martin O’Neill on Sunday night, with Sunderland one point above the relegation zone.
But the former Swindon manager is confident of avoiding dropping into the Championship.
“The Press call me the mad Italian but I would confidently bet everything I have on Sunderland remaining in the top flight,” he told the BBC.
“When I got the call from (Sunderland owner) Ellis Short, I felt fire in my belly. I would have swam to Sunderland to take the job.”
Di Canio expects his style of management to turn around a team that has failed to win any of their last eight games.
He added: “With my energy I’m sure we can get something from the next seven games. I hope my ways give the team more confidence on the pitch.
“Players need to fight for the shirt - go out on that pitch ready to sweat and shed blood for the club.
“It’s important that the fans are happy with how the team perform and I hope to achieve that. We’re all working towards the same goal.
“I want to take things step-by-step. Firstly, it’s Chelsea and we will be fully focused for that game.”