Wolverhampton Wanderers manager Nuno Espírito Santo has made his sixth signing of the summer today as keeper John Ruddy joined the club from Norwich City on a free transfer following the expiration of his contract at The Championship club.
Wolves will now be looking to secure further additions in this transfer window with another attacking player high on the list of priorities ahead of next season.
An experienced addition
Ruddy started his career at Cambridge United who at the time were playing in League Two. He was made first choice keeper in the 2004/05 season and made 38 appearances but could not prevent the U's being relegated to non-league despite keeping nine clean sheets.
The 30-year-old then attracted a considerable amount of interest. He had a trial at Manchester United before making a move to Everton in 2005 for a fee of around £250,000. However, he was never given a chance at Goodison Park and made just one appearance. He was loaned out to nine different clubs including Walsall, Rushden & Diamonds, Chester City, Stockport County, Wrexham, Bristol City, Stockport County, Crewe Alexandra and Motherwell.
He then decided to move on in his career and joined Norwich City in 2010 for a fee of around £250,000. This turned out to be a superb career move for the keeper and he has since gone on to have a very successful spell at the club. During his seven-year spell at Carrow Road, he made 235 appearances and experienced a number of highs and lows with both promotions and relegations.
However, the highlight of his career so far will have been representing England on the international stage. He has only made one appearance for his country as he came on as a substitute against Italy in a friendly in 2012. He was called up to the squad for UEFA EURO 2012 but was ruled out through injury.
Joining an exciting project
There is no doubt that it has been a fascinating summer so far for Wolves supporters. New manager Nuno Espírito Santo is clearly being backed heavily in the transfer market by Wolves' Chinese owners Fosun. Agent Jorge Mendes is also clearly having a significant influence on the club's transfer dealings this summer.
They shocked the football world when they completed the shock signing of FC Porto midfielder Rúben Neves last week for a fee of around £15 million. Neves joined the likes of Barry Douglas, Phil Ofosu-Ayeh, Roderick Miranda and Ryan Bennett who had already arrived at Molineux this summer.
Ruddy arrives with 'bitter sweet' feeling
Ruddy told Wolves' official site that he has arrived at the club with a 'bitter sweet' feeling due to the news of fellow keeper Carl Ikeme being diagnosed with acute leukaemia last week. He said: "This is a bitter sweet feeling for me - it is good to be here but the circumstances could have been better."
He added: “Having played against him over a number of years I know what a good goalkeeper he is so it would have been fantastic for the club to have had us competing and bringing out the best in each other."
The signing of Ruddy on a two-year contract may not cause the excitement of that of the Neves signing last week, but his experience could play just as big a part in Wolves' quest to gain promotion to the Premier League next season.