Paolo Di Canio poised to talk to Sunderland about manager's job
Paolo Di Canio is set to hold talks with Sunderland about succeeding Martin O'Neill at the Stadium of Light.
The Black Cats sacked O'Neill on Saturday
after a run of poor results left them only one point above the relegation zone with seven games left.
Di Canio, who led Swindon Town to promotion from League Two last season but resigned in February,
has no top-flight managerial experience.
Di Canio's managerial record
Sunderland want to make an appointment before next Sunday's game at Chelsea.
Former Queens Park Rangers and Manchester City boss Mark Hughes and Roberto Di Matteo - who won the Champions League and FA Cup as Chelsea's interim manager last season - have also been linked with the job.
Italian Di Canio, 44, first came to Britain in 1996 when he joined Celtic as a player, and followed his time in Glasgow with spells at Sheffield Wednesday, West Ham and Charlton.
He retired in 2008 after spells back in Italy with Lazio and former Serie C1 side Cisco Roma, and was handed
his first managerial role by Swindon in May 2011,
replacing Paul Hart.
Di Canio spent 21 months at the County Ground. After
quit the Robins on 18 February
after becoming frustrated with off-the-field issues.
Paolo Di Canio denies Reading and West Ham links
Swindon were in the League One play-off positions at the time.
Di Canio, who was linked with the managerial vacancy at
Reading following Brian McDermott's departure,
told BBC Sport on 13 March that he was ready to manage in the top flight.
He said: "I have already proven my ability in League Two and League One, where there are many arrogant and average players and I was able to turn [around] their mentality and help them become better footballers.
"The right place for me is the place that has the ambition and the staff who want to bring in a winning mentality.
Di Canio columns for the BBC
Hand of Suarez, paying for players and tiramisu
Redknapp, Abramovich and Movember
Recording refs, managing at the top and gesturing to fans
Crazy media, player power and British weather
"The club needs to have set rules, which for me are discipline, desire, passion, work ethic and a determination to get the right results to make everybody happy, namely the board, the fans and the club's players and staff.
"I believe I am at a stage now where I am a Premier League or Championship manager."
Sunderland are on a run of eight games without a win, with their
last league victory coming at Wigan on 19 January.