22/09/2013

Rash Decisions Mean Di Canio Dismissal

After 13 games in charge, five without a win and a confrontation with fans who attended the match against West Bromwich Albion - Ellis Short has decided to part company with Paolo Di Canio.

Few are surprised at the sacking given his controversial manner - offending players, his lack of a pre season, his extreme transfer activity and lack of points, but many are in agreement that that way the owners have handled this situation is poor.

While some argue that his appointment saved Sunderland, it is probable that O'Neill would have had a fair chance at equalling Di Canio's points tally of last season. While Paolo got the derby win, he did lose 6-1 to Aston Villa. His impact has perhaps been overestimated.
Di Canio sacked
Nevertheless, the problems here are the negotiations made by the owners. Di Canio's appointment should have (if at all) been a short term one, with the intention of saving the club from relegation, (which credit to him - he did) but it is debatable as to whether he would have ever been the man to take Sunderland to a comfortable mid table position.

It isn't just Sunderland making bad decisions - it is clear that there is a problem with a) appointing a manager and giving him long term backing, and b) the 'sack happy' nature of owners in English football at the moment.

Firstly, it is imperative for football club owners to consider their appointments carefully with a view to long term stability and progression. Too many managerial appointments are made too quickly with a lack of consideration.

Secondly, due to this nature of appointing a manager too quickly and therefore sometimes making a wrong decision leads to a desensitisation of sacking - proven by tonight's reaction. Di Canio has had 13 games in charge and it is fair to say very few are surprised by the dismissal.

This is not right. 13 games in charge is not enough time for a manager to do a fat lot. For those who are saying 'not sacking him would have been more dangerous' then the answer was to not appoint him. Of course though, it is not the fans choice as to who is appointed manager.

Which is why I propose that given the flourishing nature of supporters trusts, it wouldn't be a bad idea to put forward the opportunity for fans to have a say on who is appointed as manager of THEIR club. Fans, generally speaking, look to the club with a long term view as opposed to some owners who consider the short term benefits more.

It is also unjust for fans of a club to be punished with dire performances after spending such a large portion of their income on a season ticket due to a dodgy appointment.

While it is mad for Sunderland to dismiss Di Canio so quickly, perhaps it was even more mad for them to offer him a long term contract, or even appoint him in the first place. Yes he got Sunderland points - but was O'Neill really so incapable of keeping them up?

Football club owners need to start considering the effects of their decisions and negotiations far more. Sunderland's rash appointment and dismissal has left them with one point after five games, a caretaker manager and what is essentially a completely different squad who need to gel compared to last season.

Despite Di Canio 'saving' Sunderland from relegation last season - the club are not in a healthy position and they've got a long way to go before they are truly safe.

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