Sunderland could find themselves looking for a new manager for the start of next season - but only if the club are relegated from the Premier League, according to the Sunday Express.

The Wearside club have inserted a clause in to Di Canio's two-and-a-half-year contract at the club, saying that if they are relegated to the Championship, they can dispense of him.

Also, according to the Sunday Express, chief executive Margaret Byrne has been phoning some of the players' agents to see what they think of the controversial Italian's training methods, this coming in the same week that she made comments regarding Di Canio's appointment, in regards to his alleged political beliefs.

Things look to be getting a lot harder to keep the Black Cats in the Premier League after the club suffered a 2-1 defeat to European champions Chelsea in Di Canio's first game, but also a win for Aston Villa pulled Sunderland closer to the relegation zone, only by goal difference to Wigan, who themselves have a game in hand over the Wearside club.

Sunderland have only recorded three points from their last nine games - something they will need to improve upon and fast, starting with an away game to bitter rivals Newcastle United next Sunday.

One senior Sunderland player said: "Without being disrespectful to Martin O'Neill, we have learned more in the last four days than we did in the previous four months. We are already inspired and hopefully galvanised by him.

"His knowledge of the game is unbelievable. I must confess that he has overwhelmed us."

Can Di Canio not only save Sunderland from relegation, but also save his own career at the Stadium of Light in six games? 


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