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Paolo Di Canio: 'Ellis Short is to blame'

Former Sunderland manager Paolo Di Canio blames owner Ellis Short for the club's current plight.

Paolo Di Canio has claimed that Sunderland owner Ellis Short is to blame for the club's current plight.

The Black Cats sit one point outside the Premier League's relegation zone following Saturday's 4-0 defeat to Aston Villa, which has cast doubt over the future of manager Gus Poyet.

Di Canio saved Sunderland from relegation after being appointed manager in March 2013, but was sacked by Short a few weeks into the following campaign after a poor start.

"When I was their manager, it never happened to see the supporters leaving the stadium before the final whistle," the Italian told Fox Sports.

"This never happened because we always played with dignity, regardless of the bad results. I don't know what's happening now, but it looks like the team is drifting.

"It's not Poyet's fault, because chairman Ellis Short is the real origin of all these troubles. I saved Sunderland when the club was sinking; along with my staff, I completed a true miracle, on and off the pitch."

Poyet replaced Di Canio as Sunderland boss in October 2013.

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A tense Gus Poyet on the sideline as Sunderland go down to Aston Villa on March 14, 2015
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