SAFC v Everton

Chairman on Di Canio

by Stuart Vose

Ellis Short impressed by new head coach’s work ethic.

Sunderland chairman Ellis Short admits he’s been impressed with the dedication shown by new head coach Paolo Di Canio in his first few weeks at the club.

Di Canio, who took over at the Stadium of Light earlier this month, suffered a narrow defeat at Chelsea in his first game before leading the club to a 3-0 Tyne-Wear derby win over Newcastle.

He’s a real student of the game, spending hours on the training pitch and at the training ground every day

- Ellis Short on Di Canio

And the Italian followed up with a 1-0 victory against Everton in his first home outing thanks to a goal from Stephane Sessegnon.

Di Canio and his backroom staff have been putting in the hard yards as they map out their blueprint for success – and that dedication hasn’t escaped the chairman’s notice.

Writing in the matchday programme, Red and White, before the Everton game, Mr Short said:

“The simple answer as to why we changed managers was because our results and performances on the pitch hadn’t been good for over a year. 

“The decision to change manager was made with only one aim - to give us the best possibility of staying in the Barclays Premier League.

“I am excited that we were able to bring in Paolo.  [He] is a real training ground coach. His very choice of title of head coach rather than manager tells you a lot about him and his approach.

“He’s a real student of the game, spending hours on the training pitch and at the training ground every day. 

“He had great success at Swindon Town in taking a team that he was given and training, organising and motivating them to win.”

Mr Short added: “In my initial discussion with Paolo I was very impressed with his enthusiasm, his passion and his love of the game.

“I like his willingness to do whatever he and his team have to in order to give us a successful end to the season. Additionally, his confidence is also an asset and in the brief time he has been here the feedback from all areas of the club has only confirmed those qualities."