Date:Thursday May 16 2013
Sunderland Head Coach Paolo Di Canio says he will cut his players' summer holidays, if they do not perform against Spurs on Sunday.
The Black Cats go into their final game of the Barclays Premier League campaign knowing they are safe following Wigan's defeat Arsenal on Tuesday, but Di Canio is keen to kick-start the club's future.
Sunderland's last away fixture ended in humiliation as Aston Villa ran riot at Villa Park, running out 6-1 winners on that occasion.
Now though, Di Canio has threatened his threadbare squad with a reduced summer break if they try to coast through Sunday's curtain-closer at Tottenham.
'I told them we can win, draw or lose with dignity, respecting the club`s name and the fans who follow them.
'But if not I will reduce their holiday,' Di Canio told The Sunderland Echo.
'I will give them the minimum I can give to them, which is four weeks, 28 days instead of 38 or 40,' continued the Italian.
Sunday's clash against Champions League-chasing Spurs is the end of the beginning for Di Canio and Sunderland, with the former Swindon Town boss set to oversee his first transfer window since arriving on Wearside.
Di Canio is adamant therefore, that with safety new secured, attentions must turn to the future and starting as they mean to go on.
'We have one game to go and we have to make sure we perform well. Our future starts now - our new mentality.'
The Lads' coach has also told The Echo that there will be a significant number of additions to the squad this summer.
'We need more than a few,' stated Di Canio.
'I don`t want to say 'a lot`, because you never know what 'a lot` means, but we need to refresh the squad for many reasons,' continued the Italian.
Di Canio continued, lamenting the number of forward options available to him following Martin O'Neill's January clear-out and Steven Fletcher's season-ending injury, suffered in February.
'I want to play attacking football...we`ve missed players. On Sunday, we`ll be travelling with four kids, it means we haven`t got many players, especially up front.'
Date:Thursday May 16 2013
Sunderland Halt Citeh's Charge (Wednesday April 16 2014)
Stats: Manchester City v Sunderland (Wednesday April 16 2014)
Team News From The Etihad Stadium, Manchester. (Wednesday April 16 2014)
Sunderland Travel To Etihad To Take On City (Wednesday April 16 2014)
Sunderland Short On Numbers Ahead Of City Clash (Wednesday April 16 2014)
Poyet Will Stay If He Can (Wednesday April 16 2014)
Keeper Must Wait For Contract Talks. (Tuesday April 15 2014)
Bardsley Misses Crucial Away Games (Tuesday April 15 2014)
Team Fully Back The Manager says Cattermole (Monday April 14 2014)
'We Need Luck' says Wickham (Monday April 14 2014)
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