Paolo Di Canio: Sunderland boss threatens players' holidays

Di Canio threatens shorter holidays

Sunderland manager Paolo Di Canio has threatened to reduce his players' holidays should they not perform "with dignity" in their final game on Sunday.

"I told them we can win, draw or lose with dignity, respecting the club's name and the fans. But if not, I will reduce their holiday," said Di Canio.

He also revealed he has fined seven players for breaches of discipline.

Since he took over in March, the club have taken eight points from six games to secure their Premier League status.

Di Canio said he would give his players "the minimum" four weeks of holiday after Sunday's game at Tottenham should they not satisfy his request, rather than the usual five to six weeks.

"Everybody has to come back on the plane. We will stay another two days together to say thank you and then they can have a holiday," he continued.

"People can't disappear like this. We are a team, we fly together, we play together, we fly back together and then I will let them know when they can go."

The Italian apologised to Sunderland fans after their 6-1 defeat by Aston Villa at the end of April, and said: "Just because I fell in a trap against Aston Villa, I don't want to fall in a trap again. We have to start to change the mentality.

"I am sure that four or five individuals don't need this kind of situation, but many others have to realise we need to change mentality or we have to use punishments in some way.

"It's not fair, but until the day I am sure that my players can go on the field and in some ways I can remain at home, I have to use anything I can to help change their mentality."

Di Canio gave no further details of the players he had fined since taking over at the Stadium of Light.

The 44-year-old, who succeeded Martin O'Neill, has a two-and-a-half-year deal at the club.