Former Swindon winger Esajas hits out at Sunderland boss Di Canio

The Dutch midfielder played under the Italian for a solitary season with the Robins and has criticised the manager following his treatment at the club last year
Sunderland manager Paolo Di Canio has been vehemently criticised by former Swindon midfielder Etienne Esajas for needlessly punishing players during his brief time at the club.

Esajas featured for the Robins just six times before his contract was mutually terminated after one season, and the 28-year-old winger is now without a club.

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The former Vitesse forward, who has also played for Sheffield Wednesday, critcised Di Canio for his treatment of players, saying he could "fill a book" with "bizarre things" from his time at the club.

"I have nothing good to tell about that man", Esajas told Voetbal International.

"I can fill a book with all the incidents and bizarre things that happened. It was not a good period. I played a lot in the beginning, but then one moment I was kicked out of the team and I think that I know why.

"I had advised the club about striker Leon Clarke, my best friend that I met at Sheffield. Clarke and Di Canio couldn't get along with each other. After the League Cup clash with Southampton they fought with each other – it went that far.

"After that game, Leon couldn't even shower. He was handed his belongings immediately. After that, I was kicked out of the squad. I trained with a small group on another pitch. It's unbelievable how they treated us.

"If, say, you had to go to the doctor with your little girl, you had a problem. He [Di Canio] didn't allow you to go. After one season I was done with it. While the other players were on holiday, we had to keep training. It was just to punish us."