The Hawthorns

Next Game

West Brom v Sunderland

Saturday, 16 August 2014, 15:00

Barclays Prem

Kick It Out plea to Di Canio

Anti-discrimination campaign group Kick It Out has called on Paolo Di Canio to state his commitment to equality.

Last Updated: 02/04/13 at 19:06 Post Comment

Paolo Di Canio: Kick It Out want a commitment from new Sunderland manager

Paolo Di Canio: Kick It Out want a commitment from new Sunderland manager

The newly-appointed Sunderland manager refused to confirm or deny whether he is a fascist when he was introduced to the press on Tuesday morning.

Kick It Out later expressed concern about the far-right in football and said Italian Di Canio should make his position clear.

A statement said: "It is not part of Kick It Out's remit to sanction the selection of staff of football clubs. However, football clubs have a responsibility to ensure that their employees demonstrate a commitment to anti-discrimination and equality of opportunity.

"It may be in the interest of both the club and Mr Di Canio to acknowledge a full and frank commitment to these policies.

"It is all too easy for positive progress and engagement to be compromised by inappropriate statements, and both Sunderland supporters and members of its local community will be looking for reassurance on these points.

"When fascism is referenced within the context of English football, there is a wider concern. The spectre of the rise of far-right groups in some parts of Europe cannot be allowed to undermine the progress made in the game domestically, and the increasing number of incidents involving both neo-Nazi and Ultra groups which have happened in places like Italy and Greece, must not be replicated here.

"Kick It Out and its partners have held concerns for some time about similar groups operating in the UK. Now is the time to reinforce this vigilance."

The appointment of the former Swindon boss led to the resignation of the club's vice-chairman David Miliband, Labour MP for South Shields and former foreign secretary.

Di Canio has been pictured making a fascist salute to Lazio fans in the past and the Durham Miners' Association has asked the club to return a symbolic banner which is kept at the Stadium of Light if Di Canio remains in his post, describing his appointment as a "betrayal and a disgrace".

But Di Canio has blasted the furore over his appointment as Sunderland manager as "ridiculous and pathetic".

Footer 365

World Cup: Louis van Gaal says two Netherlands players refused to take first penalty against Argentina

Netherlands boss Louis van Gaal claims none of his players wanted to take the first penalty against Argentina.

World Cup: Argentina coach Alejandro Sabella thinks Germany are favourites for Sunday's final

​Argentina coach Alejandro Sabella thinks a well-rested Germany will have the advantage in Sunday's World Cup final.

World Cup: Penalty joy for Argentina as they beat Netherlands to reach final

Argentina overcame Netherlands on penalties after a 0-0 draw to set up a meeting with Germany in the World Cup final.

Mail Box

Mails: Are Footballers Just Big Kids?

That's what the mailbox thinks, with Brazil's players showing a lack of responsibility in their 7-1 thrashing by Germany. Plus, more on Ozil and the importance of passion...

'Wow' Says The Mailbox In Unison. Wow Indeed.

There is understandably a great deal of reaction to Tuesday night's lunacy, but we have added thoughts on the anti-Ozil 'agenda' and Liverpool acting like they're big-time...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property