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Poyet happy to work with De Fanti at Sunderland
NEW Sunderland head coach Gustavo Poyet insists he has no issue working with director of football Roberto De Fanti, but admits the pair will have to work towards the same aim in order to deliver the right players to the club in the future.
Poyet was unveiled as Paolo Di Canio’s successor on Tuesday afternoon with chairman Ellis Short handing the Uruguayan a two-year deal and the task of keeping the Black Cats in the Premier League.
The new head coach’s first game in charge will come on October 19 at Swansea City before he walks out at the Stadium of Light for the very first time when the Black Cats take on rivals Newcastle United.
Until then, Poyet will assess the squad he has inherited from Di Canio during the international break including the 14 new arrivals De Fanti brought to the club in a summer upheaval.
The majority of those buys, recommended by the Italian director of football, have failed to hit the ground running since joining in the summer, a situation that has questioned Short’s decision to bring in De Fanti to oversee the club’s recruitment policy.
Towards the end of the three-and-a-half-years Poyet spent in charge at Brighton and Hove Albion, the Uruguayan’s relationship with the board deteriorated when Paul Barber was appointed chief executive.
The move saw Poyet lose control over certain aspects of the club, but the new Black Cats boss insists he isn’t worried about the structure he will be working in on Wearside.
“I've got no worries (about the structure),” Poyet revealed. When everyone works for the same aim and the good of the club.
“I need Roberto and I need Roberto to do well for me because the better Roberto does, the better players I get.”
Whether Poyet will be granted permission to dip into the January transfer market remains to be seen, but he insists De Fanti’s job to find suitable players will be a crucial component is making his reign at the Stadium of Light a successful one.
The Italian was responsible for bringing the likes of Emanuele Giaccherini, Jozy Altidore and Ondrej Celustka to the club, but so far a chunk of the new arrivals have failed to impress.
However, Poyet is happy to work alongside De Fanti in identifying potential targets and insists he will put his faith in the director of football to deliver the goods.
He said: “I think it's a relationship. You have to explain to him exactly what you want and for him to look for them.
“I cannot do this job. I mean, the big ones (players) I see every weekend but to find others - well, someone needs to do it. This is our recruitment system.
“We will sit down, discuss the qualities of the players and then the club needs to make the decision on the financials. Then you are coming to the conclusion (on the targets).
I think that's fair and I'm happy with it. I've got no issues with it whatsoever.”
Poyet will also have decisions to make over players Di Canio banished to the shadows including right-back Phil Bardsley, who is currently on the sidelines recovering from an ankle injury and Lee Cattermole, who has been brought back into the first-team picture by caretaker manager Kevin Ball after rarely featuring under Di Canio.
Interestingly, Poyet was known to play his favoured system of 4-1-2-3 week in week out at Brighton, who he led from League One strugglers to Premier League contenders in his time at the AMEX Stadium, and the focal point of said system was a holding midfielder.
However, in his opening press conference on Tuesday, the Black Cats head coach insisted his initial job is to keep his side in the top flight and that a change in identity will come later.
The Wearsiders sit six points from safety after only seven games in which Di Canio failed to lead his side to a Premier League win with their solitary point coming at Southampton back in August.
Poyet in Sunderland’s sixth permanent manager in just five years and one of his predecessors, Steve Bruce, insists the new head coach must be given time.
“There is a big expectation up there with a big expectant crowd and it can be very difficult,” said Bruce, now manager at Hull City.
“You are given no real time. Di Canio might have been a different style of management but he won 3-0 against Newcastle, he beat Everton 1-0 and everybody was saying he was the messiah. Then he didn’t win for five, six, seven games –the Premier League can do that to you.
“A manager is only as good as his players. The better and bigger players you have got, the easier the job becomes. There is no magic wand to management.
“There might be somebody who changes the philosophy and changes the style but if you are going to do that you need time. Gus Poyet played open and expansive football at Brighton. If he is to do that at Sunderland, he must be given time.”
Meanwhile, midfielder David Vaughan has revealed the Black Cats squad has been told not to talk about Di Canio’s six-month spell in charge.
The 30-year-old, who is on international duty with Wales said: “I can’t say too much about that, because the club have told us not to.
“Under Paolo, the players did have some good times but the club decided to change things, so it’s down to us to improve our results.
“We need points quickly, otherwise we will end up being cut adrift. There’s plenty to play for, so hopefully we can climb the table.”
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