Sidwell leaves Villa for Fulham

Former Chelsea midfielder Steve Sidwell returned to his native London on Friday when he signed for Fulham for an undisclosed fee on an initial six-month deal.

The 28-year-old Sidwell, who had also interested Wolves and West Ham, joined Aston Villa from Chelsea in 2008 after initially making an impact in the top flight with Reading.

"I'm delighted my move to Fulham has been finalised, and I'm looking forward to training with the squad and helping the club make steady progress up the table in the second half of the season," he said.

He is a player whose career I have followed for a while now.
Fulham boss Mark Hughes

Fulham boss Mark Hughes added: "He is a player whose career I have followed for a while now, and there was a deal in place to bring him in prior to when I arrived. At that time I just didn't think it was the moment to make it happen because I was new to the club.

"But he has been in my thoughts ever since, and when the opportunity to sign him in the January transfer window presented itself we moved quickly knowing there was a possibility he might go somewhere else," Hughes concluded.