Sunderland owner Ellis Short has no regrets over his appointment of Paolo Di Canio.

The Daily Star says Short does not regret choosing Di Canio as Martin O'Neill's successor in March, but he always knew the appointment was a risk.

To this day, Short believes that had he not switched managers, Sunderland would have been relegated last season.

Indeed, the American businessman maintains that Di Canio demonstrated managerial genius in inspiring a squad hurtling towards the Premier League trapdoor.

But when he received a call early on Sunday afternoon informing him that the dressing room was on the verge of revolt, he realised his calculations had not added up. "Ellis now knew the madness had eclipsed the genius," said an insider.

The source also remarked: "If you think his public rollickings were out of order, what happened behind closed doors was even worse.

"In the end he battered his players into submission and a decision was taken that, for the welfare of both them and the club, the situation had become untenable.

"He'd simply gone too far."