Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

O'Shea on Secret to Di Canio Success

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

O'Shea on Secret to Di Canio Success

Article excerpt

JOHN O'Shea insists Paolo Di Canio's tactics are playing a bigger role than his passion in firing Sunderland's end-of-season revival, writes MARK DOUGLAS.

The deliberately dramatic Di Canio has captured national headlines for his grand gestures and explosive celebrations, but the Black Cats' stand-in skipper has revealed the reasons behind Sunderland's transformation are more complex.

He argues Di Canio's eye for tactical detail has played a huge part in their two wins - and has directly contributed to Stephane Sessegnon's goals against Newcastle and Everton.

The Italian boss is pulling long hours on Wearside but is using that time to pull apart his opponents, with Sunderland able to capitalise on individual errors in both of their wins under him.

O'Shea admits it is a far cry from the atmosphere of three weeks ago, when Sunderland looked to be in trouble.

He said: "When the manager took over people were looking at the fixtures and obviously Chelsea away was the first one then Newcastle away, where we hadn't beat them for so long, and Everton - who we hadn't beaten for so long.

"People were genuinely thinking Sunderland had a difficult run of fixtures.

"We had to forget about that and just listen to the manager and what he had to say. He came in on the very first day and said that he took the job because he believed in us. He said he saw the quality the team had.

"The boys have taken that on board, they believe what he's telling us and he's very clever tactically and in terms of how he sees the opposition. "He will pick out things that you might not necessarily see as obvious that we can use to hurt them, and it is benefiting us. "You've seen with the way we've been scoring goals it has partly been about making teams make mistakes and countering from there. It's gone well so far, but we have got some really big games to come. …

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