A picture-taking fan was beaten up by henchmen of Sunderland boss Paolo Di Canio [Sun]

Sunderland boss Paolo Di Canio finds himself on the front page of the Sun on Monday, with the Italian coach in trouble after his henchmen reportedly beat up a football fan.

The story painted by the Sun’s roaring, misleading headline is that Di Canio was personally involved in the fracas.

The Sun’s pieces has two headlines: Exclusive: Prem Boss ‘Flipped’ & Di Canio Bust-Up Left Me Duffed Up.

As to the meat of the story, reporter Tom Morgan wrote:

A footie fan claims he was punched by minders of controversial Premier League boss Paolo Di Canio during a hotel bust-up. Josh Harries, 20, said Sunderland’s Italian boss, 45, went beserk as he tried to take his picture and three minders dragged him away and repeatedly hit hit.

Of course there is more to the story that the cock-eyed report in the Sun, with the Italian manager having claimed that the supposed placid footie fan was in fact a annoying drunkard. Di Canio todl reporters on Sunday:

We have to clarify because I don’t want speculation, big headlines. Paolo Di Canio always says the truth so you write what I am telling you. At midnight, we walked out from a meeting room with my staff. From the first floor we walked downstairs to take the lift to the third floor for bed. Obviously, the players went to bed at 10 o’clock.

Once we were close to the lift, we heard loud people shouting. I can’t repeat any of it. Obviously their behaviour showed they were Southampton fans but, to be honest, I don’t think they wanted to attack us physically. They were young, drunk guys there after a wedding party that was inside the hotel.

I was screaming from behind the staff and we tried to push the third floor button and they tried to stop us. We tried to push them away and they started to open the door so we said ‘now we call the police’. They didn’t try to punch us in a clear way but they moved their hands and we stopped them.

We gave our version and the policeman, at 1.30am, knocked on my door again. I don’t know if he loved me. He said: ‘Can you tell me my version?’ and I said: ‘Listen, I don’t have any problem because they are only young, they’re drunk.’

At the end, there was a fun moment. They said ‘we are going to win, Rickie Lambert is going to score’ and Fabrizio [Piccareta, assistant manager] said: ‘No, tomorrow we’re going to win.’ It finished like this. No footballers, no fight.