Sunderland’s Di Canio focuses on football

NEW BOSS ... Sunderland manager Paolo Di Canio.
NEW BOSS ... Sunderland manager Paolo Di Canio.

PAOLO Di Canio’s first Press conference as Sunderland head coach was dominated by football rather than fascism.

The Italian moved swiftly to distance himself from discussion of his politics, which has dominated the news headlines since his appointment.

And he was quick to talk about how proud and excited he was to have been the job and the opportunity.

“I am only talking about football,” he said as he met the Press for the first time in the Academy of Light.

“My life speaks for me and I don’t want to be talking about it because it is ridiculous - we are a football club, not the Houses of Parliament.

“I don’t want to keep going on about something which is nothing to do with my job.”

The 44-year-old admitted his feet had barely touched the ground since being offered and taking the post.

“It was a busy weekend,” he smiled. “Very busy.

“But I am excited.

“It is fantastic for me to come in for this job because it is a fantastic opportunity.

“It will be difficult but being Sunderland manager is one of the best jobs you could hope for so I am very happy.

“I couldn’t wait to get up here. I don’t mind about any expectation. I’m not worried.

“I can’t wait to see the Stadium of Light celebrating. I want to do something for others and I want to do something for myself.

“We are paid very well in football and that gives us an extra responsibility.

“We are paid and the fans, they pay - and that’s why we have to work 24 hours a day to get it right.

“I’m not worried because one day I am sure Sunderland fans will be laughing more than crying.”

Now Di Canio will turn his full attention to his players and Sunderland’s next game, against Chelsea this Sunday.

“We have a few injuries but it is not an issue because we have enough good players to get ourselves out of this situation.

“It is obvious from the last two games, against Norwich and Man United, that some players are not fully confident but I’m sure if I do my job right then I will restore that confidence.

“If you have good ability you do not lose it overnight and I believe I can bring the best out of them.

“We have only seven games but we will give it everything, I’m sure.”