Di Canio resigns as Swindon manager after his position became 'untenable'
Joe Ridge and Ralph Ellis
19:28 GMT, 18 February 2013
22:13 GMT, 18 February 2013
Gone: Paulo Di Canio
Paolo Di Canio’s turbulent 18 months as manager of Swindon came to an end on Monday night when the fiery Italian walked out.
Di Canio, who won promotion in his first season, revealed he had resigned a week ago but gave the club’s prospective new owners seven days to get the green light from the Football League for their takeover.
When a 5pm deadline came and went last night with the deal — lined up to prevent the club going into administration — still uncertain, Di Canio decided it was time to go.
The 44-year-old had been threatening to walk out for more than a fortnight after star midfielder Matt Ritchie was sold to Bournemouth for 500,000 without his approval.
The statement said: 'In my previous press statement on 1st
February, I said that I was considering my future, as my position with
the club had become untenable, after I found out that Matt Ritchie had
been sold without my consent.
'As I had previously stated, there
have been a number of broken promises made by the club over the time
that I have been Manager of Swindon Town. Despite these problems, I have
delivered everything and more that was asked of me, by achieving
promotion last year as Champions and competing this season for promotion
to the Championship and being just 3 points from top place a year
earlier than expected.
'I did not resign immediately, nor
publicise my resignation after I had formally confirmed it, as I did not
want to jeopardise the negotiations for the sale of the club and I
wanted to listen to what the proposed new owners plans were.'
Hero: Swindon fans had done everything they could to keep Di Canio
Di Canio won 44 of the 75 league games he was in charge at Swindon, and his resignation will spark interest from bigger clubs who are looking for a new manager.
The statement continued: 'Following discussions, my representatives put forward a proposal that
would secure my future at the club until at least the end of the season
and quite possibly beyond as well. This proposal actually reduced the
Clubs contractual liabilities to me in the interest of saving Swindon
Town FC. At a meeting last Friday the proposed new owners accepted and
said they were very happy with the new terms.
'I entered into a temporary arrangement with the proposed new owners
to continue in my role as Manager but all this was agreed subject to
Football League approval for the purchase of the Club being granted by
5:00pm on Monday 18th February.
Money: Off-field financial problems have begun to dog Swindon
'At the time of issuing this statement, I have had no further contact
from the proposed new owners and I have been told that unfortunately
Football League approval has not been granted yet and therefore my
temporary arrangement has ended and my resignation stands.
'This is all I wish to say for the time being other than to thank my
Technical Staff and the players for their fantastic professional
behaviour and attitude in achieving what they have done up to today,
also thanks to the Swindon Town supporters for the incredible support
they have shown me and the team throughout my time as Manager.
'I wish the best of luck to the supporters, the players and my Technical Staff for the future.'
Undermined: Di Canio felt the sale of Matt Richie was the last straw
Swindon currently sit sixth in League
One, just two points off the automatic promotion places — but Di Canio
wanted more backing to reach the Championship. Instead, he lost his top
player and his plans to recruit more were shelved.
Swindon’s owners put the club up for
sale in mid-January, revealing they had debts of around 13million and
warning they might have to go into administration.
That fear was eased when a consortium
agreed a deal to take over, but so far its leader, Oxford-based
businessman Jed McCrory, who bought Southern League club Banbury Town
six months ago, does not have Football League backing for his plans.
Di Canio’s position will be of
interest to West Ham, where he is the fans’ favourite to take over if
the club fail to agree a contract with Sam Allardyce when his deal runs
out in June.