"Ricky has agreed to head up a new, wider, scouting network that Steve brings to us," explained Niall Quinn, Sunderland's chairman.
"Ellis Short [the club's owner] hopes we will be clever enough to trade intelligently. As long as he feels we are buying intelligently and trading smartly, and Steve has a great track record in this respect, Ellis will back us."
Quinn regards Sbragia - the first team coach before becoming manager last December - as a vital cog in this new transfer wheel. "I am not going to be interfering but I am going to make sure our recruitment structures are as good as they can be," said the chairman.
"We have to be smart, we will put a library together of all our thoughts we can call on at any stage and we will have meetings every Friday so everyone knows what's happening. Ricky will probably be here two or three days a week and travelling the rest of the time. We will be doing things a bit differently."