Source AP ©

Steve Sidwell to join Chelsea

When Steve Sidwell’s contract with Reading expires, he will join Chelsea. It will be July,1.

Sidwell turned down a new contract with Reading despite helping the club finish eighth in its first ever Premier League season.

Chelsea said he passed a medical exam Tuesday.

The Blues need backup in midfield this season as several players will be taking part in the Jan. 20-Feb. 10 African Cup of Nations - notably Ghana's Michael Essien and Nigeria's John Obi Mikel.

Strikers Salomon Kalou and Didier Drogba will be with Ivory Coast.

Sidwell was a trainee with Arsenal, and was loaned to Brentford, Beveren and Brighton before he joined Reading in 2003. He helped the club get promoted to the Premier League in 2006.