World Cup Runner-Up Joins Southampton

...To be their stand-in 'keeper for a few months

Maarten Stekelenburg has joined Southampton on a season-long loan from Championship club Fulham.

The 32-year-old joined The Cottagers from Roma two years ago but spent last season on loan in France at Monaco. The 2010 World Cup runner-up has been drafted in as Fraser Forster suffered a serious knee injury back in March. The career path of Stekelenburg is an odd one. Having started his career at Ajax in a team that contained big names such as Wesley Sneijder and Rafael van der Vaart, he moved to Italian giants Roma in 2011, but ever since his career has gone downhill. You may remember that just before his move away from Ajax, he played as Holland reached the 2010 World Cup Final, before being beaten by Spain in extra-time. In July 2013, two years after signing for Roma, they accepted a bid of £5 million from Fulham, taking a £2 million loss on what they paid Ajax. His Fulham career began well, with his side winning 0-1 away at Sunderland on his debut for the club, but he picked up injuries during that season which limited him to just 19 Premier League appearances in the 2013/14 season. He then moved to Monaco for the 14/15 season with Fulham being unable to afford his wages after relegation from the Premier League. However, he found himself as second-choice behind Croatian Danijel Subasic, only making eight appearances with only one of them being in Ligue 1. Despite this, Ronald Koeman will know his fellow countryman well and know will be good cover while Fraser Forster is out injured. Stekelenburg will provide much needed competition for the England International once back in the squad. Kelvin Davis is approaching the twilight of his career and Paulo Gazzaniga seems to be out of his depth in the Premier League so this move will be a good deal for all parties,and could get 32-year-old Stekelenburg's International career back on track.
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Sports Journalism graduate from the University of Sunderland, currently residing in Manchester. Unhealthy obsessions with Sunderland, French football and the NFL. Follow me on Twitter - @matthewwear