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Tuesday 11 June 2013

Sunderland revamp system to recruit players

Director of football and new chief scout named as three player arrivals are confirmed

  • Valentin Roberge, right, is a defender who will join Sunderland from Maritimo

  • Cabral, right, who played in midfield for Basle, will officially be a Black Cat on 1 July

  • Modibo Diakite was a team-mate of Paolo Di Canio at Lazio

Sunderland have confirmed the appointment of a director of football and chief scout as they restructure their player recruitment operation ahead of the new season.

Roberto De Fanti will be the director of football for the club, a new role, while Valentino Angeloni becomes the chief scout.

"Roberto and Valentino bring with them a wealth of experience, knowledge and football contacts"
Margaret Byrne

The two Italians worked closely on player recruitment at Udinese and Inter Milan and De Fanti helped the club with the appointment of Paolo Di Canio as head coach towards the end of last season.

“Roberto and Valentino bring with them a wealth of experience, knowledge and football contacts from across Europe, and indeed the world, and we are delighted to welcome them to Sunderland,” Margaret Byrne, the Sunderland chief executive, said. “The recruitment of players is of course key for any football club and Roberto and Valentino will work closely with the Head Coach and the board to identify targets as we look to strengthen our squad for next season and beyond.” 

Three signings confirmed

That squad strengthening has begun with Sunderland also confirming the arrival of three players next month: Valentin Roberge, Cabral and Modibo Diakité.

Roberge, 26, is a French central defender who has been playing in Portugal for Maritimo. Cabral (whose full name is Adilson Tavares Varela) is a 24-year-old midfielder who was born in the Cape Verde Islands but has represented Switzerland at junior levels. He will join from Basle. Diakite is a French central defender who will sign from Lazio, where he was a team-mate of Di Canio.

All three will join on free transfers and will make their competitive debuts for Sunderland at the Barclays Asia Trophy in Hong Kong on 24 July when they face Tottenham Hotspur in Hong Kong.

There are tickets still available for that match, as well as Manchester City v South China, the same day. Click here for more information.

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Key Points

  • Sunderland announce appointment of director of football and chief scout
  • Roberto De Fanti joins from Inter Milan as director of football with Valentino Angeloni chief scout
  • Sunderland also confirm signing of three players on free transfers in July