Sunderland sack Di Canio after miserable start to the season

BOTTOM of the table Sunderland parted company with manager Paolo Di Canio last night after less than six months at the helm.

The Black Cats have won just three games during the fiery Italian’s tenure, which began on 31 March, and taken a solitary point in the Premier League this season.

Following Saturday’s 3-0 away defeat at West Brom, their third in a row, Di Canio approached the travelling supporters after the game and was roundly booed when he gestured for them to keep their heads up.

And the former West Ham striker, who signed 14 new players this summer, swiftly became the first Premier League managerial casualty of the season, with a statement on the Sunderland website announcing his departure.

“Sunderland AFC confirms that it has parted company with head coach Paolo Di Canio,” it read.

“Kevin Ball [development coach] will take charge of the squad ahead of Tuesday night’s Capital One Cup game against Peterborough United and an announcement will be made in due course regarding a permanent successor.

“The club would like to place on record its thanks to Paolo and his staff and wishes them well for the future.”

Former Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo is favourite to succeed Di Canio at the Stadium of Light.