Paolo Di Canio responds to O’Neill “charlatan” comments
Gus Poyet is the new manager of Sunderland, although his two predecessors have been waging a war of words this week, with Paolo Di Canio today responding to comments from Martin O’Neill that the Italian was a “managerial charlatan”.
November 15th, 2013
Di Canio replaced O’Neill at the Stadium of Light last season and kept the Black Cats in the Premier League before being given his marching orders early this campaign following a poor star, with several players unhappy with the manager’s regime.
He told Sky Sports News on Friday: “I don’t know if he knows the meaning of this word charlatan. Probably I can teach him, even if I am not English.
“I respect the opinion of manager Martin O’Neill but the fact that he spoke after six months, not straight away that proves what kind of level he is. He is not very big.
“A charlatan is a manager who spends £40m to be a top 10 club and then sees the club sink into the relegation zone.”
Di Canio reiterated that the fitness of the players were questionable when he took over at the Stadium of Light.
“The fitness levels were pathetic,” he said. “I had players who told me they had cramps from driving the car.
“I had three players with injuries in the calf after 20 minutes of a game. Six different players with problems means they were not fit.”
It appears that several players had issues with Di Canio, including David Bardsley, Steven Fletcher and Lee Cattermole, although the former Sunderland boss claims that there was no training ground bust-up.
“It never happened,” he said. “There was a typical meeting, as there was after every game to see the clips and analyse the game. Maybe there was opinion but this happens in every good family.
“What doesn’t kill me makes me stronger. I can’t wait to have another chance with the right people. I feel a better manager than before. Even if I have requests from around Europe I say no.
“There is no space for me in England at the moment but I will wait. It would be stupid for a chairman not to call me. Even if it’s at a Championship club with a project.”