Paolo Di Canio accused his Sunderland players of having 'rubbish in their brains' after they slumped to a 3-0 defeat at West Brom on Saturday.
The fiery Italian had a bizarre stand-off with the travelling fans after the final whistle, staring at them when some supporters made abusive gestures.
Michael Gray: "I'm surprised that Paolo's lost his job.
"You obviously don't get time in the Premier League to let the players gel, you've got to hit the ground running and obviously they haven't done that. It's been a disappointing start but I still think he should have been given a lot more time than he has been.
"I think that when you come in front of the camera and you criticise individual players, it's something you've got to learn from, you can't do that in this day and age.
"Dressing rooms can be very strong if you've got strong characters in there and Sunderland have certainly got that in the likes of John O'Shea, who's the captain at the club, and when you come out and criticise him publicly that filters through to the rest of the players in the dressing room and I think when you start losing the players it can make it very hard for yourself."