Sunderland new-boy Graham relishing Di Canio’s attacking play

The former Swansea striker is yet to score since his arrival on Wearside, but is confident he can rediscover the sort of form that crowned him Championship top scorer in 2011
Sunderland striker Danny Graham has revealed Paolo Di Canio’s attacking instincts have instilled a new sense of belief at the Stadium of Light.

The Italian firebrand inherited a side that had failed to win in the eight outings previous to his arrival, having scored just five goals in the process.

But even despite the loss of top-scorer Steven Fletcher, the Black Cats have netted four times in their first two games with the Italian at the helm, recording a morale-boosting 3-0 victory over arch-rivals Newcastle on Sunday.

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And Graham believes they have Di Canio’s attacking impetus and tactical ethos to thank for their recent upturn in results.

"The new gaffer has given us belief and a licence to attack - he wants us to be solid and always to keep our shape but he really wants us to go forward and that's great for someone like me," Graham told the Sunderland Echo.

"He was a striker himself and scored lots of goals - a lot of good goals at that - so we've got that on our side as forwards.

"He's big on us getting bodies into the box to cause the opposition problems and that is only going to benefit us in terms of getting goals.

"We've got four goals in his first two games in charge, so hopefully that's a sign of things to come."

And even though the 27-year-old has failed to score in any of his outings as a Sunderland player, he remains confident his hard work will begin to yield results on the pitch in the coming weeks.

"I worked hard for the team against Newcastle and I was pleased with my performance," he said.

"I didn't get on the score sheet but I think that was the best I've played in a Sunderland shirt.

"But it did my confidence a world of good too because we are very attack minded now and that suits my game."