Di Canio in front of the media. Owen Humphreys/PA Wire/Press Association Images
Black Cats

'I'm not in the House of Parliament' - Di Canio wants to talk about football, not politics

The Italian was unveiled as Sunderland manager this morning.

PAOLO DI CANIO says he is completely confident in his ability to keep Sunderland in the Premier League this season.

The Italian was appointed as the new manager at the Stadium of Light after Martin O’Neill was sacked following the 1-0 defeat to Manchester United on Saturday.

The former Swindon Town boss claims he would bet everything he has on the Black Cats avoiding relegation.

“You always call me the ‘Mad Italian’, so I will bet all of what I’ve got, for sure, because I am sure that I am capable,” he said.

We have to always remember that obviously the protagonists are the players, because you can help them a lot to give their best but they are the protagonists.

“This is just because I’m sure we’ve got quality. I can help them to express their real potential.

“We have a good mix of footballers. I’m sure I can bet a lot of money and become richer than now.”

The former West Ham and Lazio attacker refused to field questions about his political beliefs in his first news conference, however.

Ex-foreign secretary David Miliband resigned from the Sunderland board because of Di Canio’s ‘past political statements’, most notably when he told Italian news agencyANSA in 2005: “I am a fascist, not a racist”.

The Durham Miners’ Association have also demanded the return of their banner at the Stadium of Light.

“I was prepared for the interest, not because it is Paolo Di Canio but because of the change at the club,” he said on Tuesday.

“I don’t have to answer this question anymore.

There was a very good statement from the club (with) very, very clear words that came out from me.

“I don’t want to talk about politics – I’m not in the House of Parliament, I’m not a political person, I will only talk about football.”

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