David Moyes says Papy Djilobodji was signed as a direct replacement for Younes Kaboul - but didn't expect him to be thrown into the side so soon.
Djilobodji, an £8million signing from Chelsea, will start against Middlesbrough on Sunday lunchtime following the impending sale of Younes Kaboul to Watford for a fee in the region of £3.5million.
Kaboul expressed a desire to leave Wearside for personal reasons and move back to his home and family near Watford.
Moyes revealed Sunderland haven't lost any money on the player signed from Tottenham Hotspur 12-months ago, with Kaboul undergoing his medical at Watford on Friday.
"We've lost Younes but it was our choice as well," said Moyes.
"Younes had stated his keenness to go back to Watford, his home was there and he wanted to move back with his family.
"We have looked at it, he is 30-years-old and we have got the money back that we paid for him a year ago.
"We have brought in Papy as a direct replacement, really, but not hopefully quite so soon.
"It has happened quicker than that, so on we go."
Djilobodji is set to partner skipper John O'Shea in the heart of the Sunderland defence against Middlesbrough, with Moyes without the two central defenders that started against Manchester City.
It has been a testing week for Moyes with the sale of Kaboul and also further injury problems, with Lamine Kone missing out with a back injury 24-hours after the offer of a new contract.
The defender was offered the new deal on Thursday but Moyes revealed that the Ivory Coast international did not appear to want the new contract offer.
Moyes has previously said he expects Kone to stay at the club this summer after Everton last week lodged an £18million bid for the Ivory Coast international.
"Football clubs are much bigger than any individuals and always will be," said Moyes.
"Football clubs are supporters, they are there for the community.
"Players and managers come and go.
"It is part of the job, people can see the job of a football manager has changed dramatically in the differences in the rules and the agents involved."