No, YOU'RE a charlatan! Di Canio hits back at O'Neill and claims 'he is not very big'

By David Kent

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Paolo Di Canio has hit back at Martin O'Neill as the war of words between the former Sunderland managers continued.

Di Canio succeeded O'Neill at the Stadium of Light in March and, on his arrival, criticised the fitness levels in the squad.

O'Neill took his time to respond but following his appointment as Republic of Ireland boss earlier this week, he dismissed Di Canio's barbs and labelled the Italian a 'managerial charlatan'.

Outspoken: Paolo Di Canio has hit back at his Sunderland predecessor Martin O'Neill

Outspoken: Paolo Di Canio has hit back at his Sunderland predecessor Martin O'Neill

 

Di Canio, who led Sunderland to Barclays Premier League survival last season before being sacked after five games of the current campaign, 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 stood by his claim that the Black Cats players were not in peak condition when he arrived on Wearside.

'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.'

Di Canio was dismissed after a 3-0 defeat at West Brom, a result which was reportedly followed a day later by a training ground bust-up with senior players which led them to ask the board to take action.
Di Canio insisted, however, that no argument took place.

'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.'

Jibe: O'Neill (left) described Di Canio as a managerial charlatan

Jibe: O'Neill (left) described Di Canio as a managerial charlatan

Odd couple: O'Neill has taken charge of Ireland's national team, with Roy Keane (right) as his assistant

Odd couple: O'Neill has taken charge of Ireland's national team, with Roy Keane (right) as his assistant

Even though his first foray into top-flight management ended in acrimonious fashion, it has not quelled Di Canio's confidence and he remains hopeful of finding another job in England.

'I was too good, my level was too high,' he said of his experience at Sunderland.

'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.'

 

The comments below have not been moderated.

I was gobsmacked that O'Neil could call anyone a footballing charlatan after walking out on Aston Villa 5 days before the start of the season. He has no loyalty, no respect and HE is the charlatan!!

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PDC - management by hand grenade? More like a few land mines!!!! YNWA

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DC should have quit while he was ahead on this argument....he had me when he said MON doesn't know the meaning of the word 'Charlatan' but cracked me up when he said he was too good and owners would be mad not to call him! Personally, I think he screwed up when let Sess go....

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Di Canio is a clown.

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This reincarnation of Mussolini is a looney !

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Di Canotio reminds me of the late and unlamented Mussolini, a loud mouthed strutting peacock put into power by people who lacked thinking capabilities. The Sunderland board who employed him should be ashamed and apologies to their supporters. No matter how great the manager, without quality players a clubs results will be the visual marker for its level of ability. Even if they produced a new Beckham, they would sell him and use the money to bring in another sub standard player and pay the bank some of the loans.

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MON won two league cups with Leicester (1997 and 2000) and they were beaten in 1999. He got them into the Premier League and then achieved top 10 positions in all seasons whilst manager. All on a small budget. Managing Celtic is hard to judge, as with Graeme Souness when he took over at Rangers, there really wasn't much in the way of competition. His record since then, with considerably larger funds than at Leicester, has not been great. Hope it works for him and Ireland as I will be forever grateful for what he achieved at Leicester, but I am also glad that he didn't return when there was talk of him doing so.

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he took celtic to the Uefa cup final? "wasn't much in the way of competition"

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I don't like o'niell coming out saying that and starting a war, but hard to disagree, what has di canio really done??? Cause problems with his own players, which got him the sack let's be honest

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O'Neill should zip it - his managerial career of late hasn't exactly been stellar.

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Both rubbish

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