He resigned as manager of English soccer club Swindon Town FC on Monday, only to return early Thursday morning in spectacular fashion.
Di Canio and three of his assistants entered the manager’s office at Swindon’s stadium, County Ground, to retrieve some mementos from his 21 successful months at the club. These include wall-mounted photos which were taken down with enough force to cause a bit of damage. The fact that this all took place around 1 a.m. doesn’t seem to strike Di Canio as strange, according to the BBC.
“I decided that I would clear my office of my own personal items at a time when no one else was there,” Di Canio said. “I attended the County Ground with some of my technical staff who were still employees of the club and entered into my office to remove my personal items, including some pictures that I had asked the club to produce personally for me. These pictures documented the time when I signed for the club and our first preseason and were personal to me.”
Di Canio used access codes to enter the premises. He hadn’t returned the office keys to the club after submitting his resignation, so he had no problem getting back inside (in his defense, the club hasn’t responded to his resignation letter, so returning keys may have been the last thing on his mind).
When Swindon staff came into work on Friday, they thought burglars had struck the club. They checked security cameras and found that the former manager and members of his team had staged a late-night return. Di Canio’s former assistant, Fabrizio Piccareta, went to Swindon that day and came clean.
“There was no force used in anything we did and the following day, Fabrizio Piccareta, along with some of my technical staff, went into the club to advise them of what we had done, offering to pay for the small amount of damage,” Di Canio said.
Swindon has since changed the locks and access codes.
What makes this story even stranger is that there is a chance Di Canio could return to Swindon Town as manager. He cited differences with the board of directors as reasons for resigning, but the club was sold to new owners last week. A new set of directors could convince the former Juventus, AC Milan, Lazio, West Ham and Celtic striker to finish what he started — taking the club from the depths of the Football League to within striking distance of the Premier League.
Photo via Twitter/@Ladbrokes