SAFC unveil De Fanti and Angeloni as part of new hierarchy at Stadium of Light

A dejected Paolo Di Canio at Villa Park.
A dejected Paolo Di Canio at Villa Park.

SUNDERLAND have confirmed the appointment of Roberto De Fanti as the club’s new director of football and Valentino Angeloni as its chief scout.

De Fanti, who has been involved in football for many years as an agent, has worked closely with Angeloni on player recruitment at both Udinese and Inter Milan so the two are already well known to each other.

And the duo’s arrival swells further the Italian influence at the club which now stretches from top to bottom at the Stadium of Light.

De Fanti, an associate of Sunderland’s American owner Ellis Short, was influential in the appointment of Sunderland’s head coach Paolo Di Canio back in March.

And confirmation of his appointment follows weeks of speculation that he was already in situ and developing his new role.

Similarly with Angeloni, SportMail reported earlier this month that he was expected to be on his way out of Inter Milan and into Sunderland.

And now that he is officially in place, he will be charged with implementing the successful ‘Udinese Model’ transfer policy – of buying promising, young players, developing them so they reach their full potential before ultimately being prepared to sell them to start again.

He arrives at the club having already done the spade work on the signing of several Bosman signings from across Europe, who will be unveiled at Sunderland next month.

A former Sampdoria player, Angeloni took up scouting with Torino in 2007, before spending four years with Udinese as part of their famed technical set up.

During his time at the Italian club he discovered players such as Barcelona’s Alexis Sanchez, who he signed as a 17 year old.

He was appointed as FC Internazionale’s head of scouting in March 2012 and his capture by Sunderland has to be regarded as a real coup for the Black Cats - especially if he proves up to the task of improving the disappointing success-rate of player recruitment in recent years.

Sunderland AFC’S chief executive Margaret Byrne, said: “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.

“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.

“I would also like to extend our thanks to the President of Inter Milan, Massimo Moratti, who graciously agreed to allow Valentino to make the move to Sunderland.”