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Page last updated at 12:31 GMT, Wednesday, 19 May 2010 13:31 UK

Birmingham sign Manchester United goalkeeper Ben Foster

Ben Foster
Foster signed a new four-year contract at Manchester United in 2009

Birmingham City have signed goalkeeper Ben Foster from Manchester United on a three-year deal for an undisclosed fee.

The 27-year-old England international fills the gap left by Joe Hart's return to Manchester City after a loan spell.

Blues boss Alex McLeish told the club's website: "We've signed another young hungry goalkeeper who wants to prove himself and live up to his potential."

Foster joined United from Stoke in 2005 and signed an improved four-year contract at Old Trafford in July 2009.

He began last season as United's first choice but errors in the Community Shield against Chelsea as well as the Manchester derby cost him his place.

The Leamington Spa-born shot-stopper played for England as recently as November, against Brazil, but a lack of regular club football saw him dropped and as a result he missed out on a place in the World Cup squad - which includes his Birmingham predecessor Hart.


Foster has won four England caps but played only nine times for United in the last campaign with Dutch veteran Edwin van der Sar the preferred number one at Old Trafford.

McLeish added: "Ben's situation is similar to Joe's in that he found himself twiddling his thumbs behind another top keeper in Van der Sar.

"Goalkeepers can go on forever so that one was a losing battle for Ben. Ben is ambitious and wants to play regular football and naturally doesn't want to play second fiddle.

"The goalkeeper is a massive position. It looks as if we've got another great acquisition with Ben Foster. We believe he is of the same kind of standard as Joe Hart."

United boss Sir Alex Ferguson revealed England Under-21 keeper Ben Amos would be promoted to his first-team squad for next season as back-up to Van der Sar and Tomasz Kuszczak.

"He will now be our third goalkeeper, he's very talented and has a good future ahead of him," said Ferguson.

Birmingham finished a highly respectable ninth in the Premier League last season.

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see also
Man Utd ready to limit signings
18 May 10 |  Man Utd
Mancini keen to have Hart at City
08 Apr 10 |  Man City
Birmingham sign midfielder Valles
18 May 10 |  Birmingham
Man Utd rule out Foster loan move
15 Jan 10 |  Man Utd
Foster going nowhere - Ferguson
20 Nov 09 |  Man Utd
Foster 'disheartened' at Man Utd
15 Nov 09 |  Man Utd
Ferguson to keep faith in Foster
25 Sep 09 |  Man Utd
Brazil 1-0 England
14 Nov 09 |  Internationals
Foster's testing future
06 Oct 09 |  Man Utd

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