Burton Albion have signed defender John Brayford on a two-year-deal after his contract with Sheffield United was terminated by mutual consent earlier this evening.

The 29-year-old joins the Brewers for a second time, having started his career with Albion before joining Crewe Alexandra after making 80 appearances at the Pirelli Stadium.

Spells at Derby County, Cardiff City and the Blades followed, before his Brewers return for a first time on loan last term.

Brayford becomes Albion's 10th signing of the summer, and further strengthens a rearguard that has seen an extensive overhaul - and his signing will soften the blow of losing midfielder Jackson Irvine to Hull City yesterday, for a fee we believe to be in the region of £2 million plus add-ons.

Jackson Irvine (centre) and John Brayford (right) in action at Bristol City in 2016/17

He joins Jake Buxton and Stephen Warnock in the battle for a spot in the Brewers' defence, and his performances last term will surely guarantee him a spot in the Albion side.

He made 33 appearances last season, captaining the club on a number of times, as the Brewers escaped an immediate Championship relegation in their debut season in the second-tier.

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Brayford is clearly a favourite of Brewers manager Nigel Clough , having spoken in glowing terms about the former Nottingham Forest striker during last season's heroic Championship survival exploits, and has now played under Clough at three separate clubs.

The ex-Cardiff man was surplus to requirements at Bramall Lane following the Blades' promotion from League One last term - and had only featured in one game this term, United's 3-2 Carabao Cup first-round win over Walsall.

Burton boss Nigel Clough kept his summary of Brayford's return short but sweet, and said: "It’s brilliant he's is back – what more do you need to say about John?"

Brayford himself added: "I thought we were building something last year so I'm delighted to be back to help the club keep putting those steps in place and grow even more.

"We can carry on building the football club on and off the pitch doing things the right way and progressing.

"I think I am at an age now where I can help other players. I know how the Gaffer has brought me on and got his methods across so hopefully now I can help the younger players as well as showing my enthusiasm and professionalism on the pitch."