Back of the Net's John Foster reports on week of controversy that is now definitely kind of over...
Following three days of controversy and mounting public pressure, Paolo Di Canio has agreed to sort of distance himself from fascism, by releasing a statement that was welcomed by supporters groups, anti-racist activists, and fans of hazy dissemblage.
Both Sunderland and their new manager will now hope to move on from the scandal, which arrived out of nowhere, a mere eight years after the Italian had publicly declared himself a fascist.
Ã¢ÂÂI do not support the ideology of fascism,Ã¢ÂÂ a statement from Di Canio read, Ã¢ÂÂand if anyone claims I do, perhaps while referring to my past statements, or actions, or my DUX tattoo, or my previous self-identification as a fascist, they should be aware that these things were taken out of context.Ã¢ÂÂ
Voices from all levels of the game had been raised in protest at Di CanioÃ¢ÂÂs views, with anti-racism pressure groups calling on Di Canio to issue an Ã¢ÂÂambiguous and oddly phrased semi-repudiationÃ¢ÂÂ of his fascist views.
Ã¢ÂÂWeÃ¢ÂÂre delighted Paolo Di Canio has made it plain where he stands on the issue of media scrutiny of his political opinions, while leaving a vague question mark over the opinions themselves,Ã¢ÂÂ a spokesman told FourFourTwo. Ã¢ÂÂHeÃ¢ÂÂs nearly drawn a line under the issue, and now we can all move on, sort of.Ã¢ÂÂ
The broader football community also expressed their willingness to welcome Di Canio back into the fold after he sort of rejected fascism, with a number of senior figures in the game putting their names to a statement released earlier today.
Ã¢ÂÂThe Premier League is no place for people with an questionable history,Ã¢ÂÂ read the statement, which was signed by a host of past and present owners of Premier League clubs, none of whom have ever been involved in anything dodgy.
Di Canio also confirmed that any journalists who continue to question him about his alleged authoritarian opinions will be banned.
Editor's note: this is satire - quotes may be fictionalised. But you knew that, because you're not stupid.
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