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Official: Chelsea sign Marco Amelia

Claudio Villa/Getty Images

Who's got two thumbs and likes to wear goalkeeper gloves?  This guy!  His name is Marco Amelia.  He's not to be confused with Marco Ambrosio, who was the last Italian of dubious pedigree to play for the Blues.  Though perhaps that's harsh on both counts.  Ambrosio, after all, was the man between the sticks on that glorious Champions League quarterfinal day that still haunts Arsene Wenger.

But back to the present.

The 33-year-old goalkeeper made his name at Livorno ten years ago, helping the provincial side reach Europe and even winning 9 caps for Italy and winning a World Cup in 2006 (that's 9 more caps than Carlo Cudicini, to put it into perspective).  Amelia never quite kicked on from there however, and had spent the majority of the last 5 seasons as backup at AC Milan.  He essentially retired two summers ago to take up a player-manager-owner role at a lower division side, before returning to the professional game earlier this calendar year.  His contract at Serie B Perugia ended in the summer; he'd been a free agent since.

Since he was a free agent, we don't have to worry about applying for emergency loans and such.  Amelia, presumably, slots in as Begovic's backup, pushing Jamal Blackman back down to his customary third goalkeeper role.  Amelia's experience and ambition in coaching possibly helped convince us to make this move as well; it's easy to see him fulfilling a role similar to what Henrique Hilario played for many years.

Amelia has signed a short-term deal running through the end of the season.  Welcome, Marco!

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