What happened next to Paolo Di Canio and Roberto De Fanti's 2013 summer signings? Catch up with Cabral, Celustka & co...

Young Swedish winger David Moberg Karlsson has recently spoken of his galling spell in Sunderland.

Wednesday, 11th January 2017, 11:44 am
Updated Wednesday, 11th January 2017, 3:36 pm
Valentin Roberge and Modibo Diakite

It was a turbulent time for the club, Paolo Di Canio and Roberto De Fanti overseeing massive change and bringing a raft of new players to the club.

Catching up with Moberg Karlsson, now rebuilding his career in Sweden, got us thinking, what happened to the others who joined the club that summer?

Well, here's the answers...

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Duncan Watmore

There aren't many hits in this list but the decision to take a gamble on Watmore, at the time playing for Altrincham, was a good one.

He built a big reputation plundering goals in the youth set-up and went on to make an impression at first-team level. David Moyes would be picking him every week if it wasn't for a serious injury.

Modibo Diakite

Diakite struggled at Sunderland, a disastrous display at Crystal Palace in which John O'Shea ended up getting sent off living long in the memory.

He signed for Deportivo two days after leaving Sunderland on a free, and has had a nomadic existence since. Spent some time at Frosinone and Sampdoria but is now a free agent.

Has still never really nailed down a regular spot at any club he has played for.

Valentin Roberge

Remarkably, Roberge only actually left the club last summer.

He had a loan spell at Reims but otherwise Sunderland struggled to shift him.

Is now at Apollon Limassol, who currently sit fourth in the Cypriot First Division.

Ondrej Celustka

Signed from the Turkish League, Celutska managed 21 Premier League appearances during his loan spell.

He was released by by Trabzonspor at the end of that year and spent a year playing for FC Nurnberg in the German second tier. Has returned to Turkey and for two seasons has been a first team regular for Antalyaspor.

One of the most surprising Sunderland wins of the modern era came when he played in a back four with Diakite, Roberge, Bardsley at Goodison Park and landed a 1-0 win.


One league appearance was all Cabral managed. Substituted in the Capital One Cup win over MK Dons the next day, we never saw him again. Lee Cattermole's replacement, he never quite turned out to be.

Loaned to Genoa before signing for FC Zurich last summer. Had his contract terminated just a month ago and is now a free agent.

Vito Mannone & Fabio Borini

Both subject to transfer speculation this month, but have more than repaid the faith Sunderland showed in them that summer.

Mannone has been a very dependable player for the Black Cats, and the memories of Borini's contribution to that season are fond, with crucial goals in the great escape and run to the cup final.

Has perhaps not quite recaptured that form in his second spell.

Jozy Altidore

Sunderland's marquee signing that summer, he only ever scored three times, two of those in the League cup.

De Fanti's replacement Lee Congerton came in for plenty of criticism himself but the swap deal that brought Defoe to the North East is arguably the most significant deal the club have done in their Premier League era.

Altidore has a strong goal scoring record in the MLS, averaging more than a goal every two games in the recent campaign. Still has only two Premier Goals to his name in around 70 games.

El-Hadji Ba

Another young signing who never really threatened to make the grade, even if he does still have a Sunderland goal to his name, netting in the 3-1 FA Cup win over Carlisle United.

A loan spell at Bastia was followed by a switch to Charlton Athletic, where he made a number of league appearances as they were relegated from the Championship.

Struggled with injury and then manager Russell Slade questioned at the start of the season whether he had the 'hunger and desire' to play for the club. Has not played since.

Charis Mavrias

Now in the second tier of German football with Karlsruher, after impressing on a loan deal with Fortuna Dusseldorf last season.

Dusseldorf offered a cut price bit for Mavrias before he joined Karlsruher, with Sunderland ultimately losing the best part of £2 million on his departure.

Mavrias arrived having been a regular for Greek giants Panathinaikos, but never broke through.


An excellent player for Sunderland that season, he went to be named Swansea's player of the year in the following campaign.

Has badly struggled for form since as the Swans have fallen into the relegation zone, unable to hold down a first team spot.

Andrea Dossena

Signed with Sunderland desperately short at left-back, played in a famous 2-1 win over Newcastle before being sent off for stamping on Hull City's David Meyler. Lost his place when Marcos Alonso signed on loan in January and performed superbly.

Then went to sign for Leyton Orient, but didn't impress as they were relegated to League Two. Now a free agent following a season playing for FC Chiasso in the second tier of Swiss football.

Emanuele Giaccherini

Could never pin down a spot in the Sunderland squad, playing a part in some memorable wins but bitterly disappointing at other times.

A successful loan spell at Bologna convinced Antonio Conte, with whom he had a close relationship at Juventus, to take him to the Euros. Giaccherini was superb and that alerted Napoli, who snapped him up in the summer.

Has not been a regular but did net his first goal last night in the Coppa Italia.