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Cudicini swaps Chelsea for Spurs

January 27, 2009 10:32 IST

Italian goalkeeper Carlo Cudicini joined Tottenham Hotspur's relegation fight on Monday, leaving Chelsea on a free transfer after 10 years at Stamford Bridge.

The 35-year-old, once voted the best goalkeeper in England [Images] but second choice to Petr Cech for the last five years, could make his debut for Tottenham on Tuesday at home to Stoke City.

Cudicini will provide stiff competition for Brazilian Heurelho Gomes who has been erratic since joining the club from PSV Eindhoven in the close season and is currently struggling to kick because of a leg injury. Spurs are 16th in the Premier League.

"Chelsea would like to take this opportunity to thank Carlo for his years of service and wish him well," Chelsea's website said on Monday.

Cudicini arrived at Chelsea, then managed by fellow Italian Gianluca Vialli, from the lower leagues of Italian football in 1999 and had three seasons as first choice keeper before the arrival of Petr Cech in 2004.

In all he played 216 times for the club, but missed out on Premier League winners' medals having not played the required amount of matches when Chelsea won the titles in 2004-05 and 2005-06.

Cudicini's departure means Portuguese Henrique Hilario takes over as Cech's deputy.

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