Sunderland defender Phil Bardsley has been suspended with immediate effect by manager Paolo Di Canio after mocking the club’s Premier League opening day defeat to Fulham through his Instagram account.
A Pajtim Kasami headed the Cottagers to a 1-0 victory at the Stadium of Light on Saturday, with Di Canio’s 10 new signings failing to have the desired impact on the match.
Bardsley took to his personal account to comment on the defeat, which has resulted in his indefinite suspension from the club.
The defender posted: “Great opening day. Hahahhahaha hahahhaha!!!”
The notoriously strict Italian has reacted immediately and told Bardsley not to attend the club’s Academy of Light training ground, with the incident being the second time that the 28-year-old has fallen foul of Di Canio.
In May this year, Bardsley was pictured on the floor in a Newcastle casino covered in £50 notes ahead of their final league game against Tottenham. The former Manchester United player was dropped from the squad and was made to train with the Under-21’s throughout the summer until he picked up an injury in a friendly last week.
Fans were infuriated with his behaviour along with club official’s, who demanded an explanation from the Scotland international before he was “fully suspended”.
Bardsley, who spent time on-loan at Royal Antwerp, Burnley, Rangers, Aston Villa and Sheffield United while on the books at Old Trafford, is now expected to be sold this week, with Fulham one of the club’s believed to be interested in his services.
He was allocated a shirt number by Di Canio last week, but it seems he now has no future with the club as they look to offload him. Captain Lee Cattermole was also handed the number 33 shirt, but his regular number six has been given to new signing Cabral, who made his debut on Saturday, while Cattermole has not played for the club since February.