Paolo Di Canio suspended after displaying 'dux' tattoo by Sky Italia

Paolo Di Canio
Paolo di Canio was Sunderland manager for just under six months in 2013

Paolo di Canio has been suspended from his role as a Sky Italia pundit after showing on air a tattoo referring to Italian dictator Benito Mussolini.

The ex-West Ham striker revealed his tattoo of the word "dux" during their Premier League coverage on Sunday, prompting a protest on social media.

The Latin word is the origin of the Italian "duce" meaning leader - Il Duce was the title adopted by Mussolini.

"We made a mistake, we are sorry to all who were hurt," said a Sky executive.

Jacques Raynaud, Sky Sports executive vice-president, continued: "After speaking at length to Di Canio, and despite his professionalism and his expertise regarding football, we have decided together to suspend the partnership."

Former West Ham striker Di Canio has previously been criticised for his political views and refused to address his reported beliefs when he was appointed Sunderland manager in 2013.

He was fined by Italian club Lazio for making the fascist salute for the third time in a year during the 2005 derby with AS Roma.

Mussolini was the fascist dictator of Italy for 20 years until 1943, and was summarily executed in 1945 when he was captured by Italian communists while attempting to flee the country.

Paolo Di Canio
Di Canio was fined by Lazio for giving the fascist salute against rivals AS Roma in 2005

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