PHIL Edwards will be relaxing on holiday this week after signing a new deal with Burton Albion nice and early.
The popular defender inked a one-year extension to his Brewers contract along with a host of team-mates last week, and said he had no hesitation.
“As soon as I was offered the new contract I was keen to sign it,” said the 28-year-old.
“The last couple of years, I’ve had to wait until the end of the season, and then you go into your holidays not knowing what your future holds.
“I can go away now, relax and enjoy my holiday.
“Obviously I’m delighted to be here again next year and hopefully we can go one step further.”
Along with handing Edwards fresh terms, boss Gary Rowett moved quickly to tie down Lee Bell, Dean Lyness and Dominic Knowles, youngsters Marcus Harness, Liam Slade and Joe Doyle, as well as signing Shane Cansdell-Sherriff permanently from Preston.
“When I spoke to the gaffer about my contract, he said he likes to get business done early,” said Edwards.
“We have kept the majority of the players from last season, which is good because they got us to the play-off final.
“It was important for the gaffer to keep that side together, and I’m pleased he has.”
Edwards, who can play anywhere across the back four, looked to have been brought in as cover when he joined from Rochdale last summer, and played second fiddle to Rory Delap at the start of the season.
However, Delap picked up an injury which eventually forced him to retire, and Edwards eventually went on to top the Albion appearance charts.
“I’ve played a lot of games, and enjoyed playing for Burton week in, week out,” said the Kirkby-born defender, who played more than 200 games for Accrington Stanley earlier in his career.
“When I signed, I was hoping to play a lot, but at the start of the season, Rory Delap came in and I missed about five games when he was playing.
“Then, fortunately for me but unfortunately for him, he got injured and I haven’t looked back.
“It was great being at the same club as Rory, as he’s played at the highest level of football.
“I learned a lot from him.”
Edwards was also runner-up in the fans’ player of the year poll earlier this month, and said: “It’s nice to be appreciated from the fans for what you do on a Saturday afternoon or Tuesday night, so I was very pleased with that.”