BURTON Albion have signed goalkeeper Connor Ripley on a season-long loan from Middlesbrough.
The 24-year-old is the son of former Boro player Stuart Ripley and has been with the club since 2009.
He spent last season on loan at Oldham Athletic and picked up two Player of the Season awards from the club’s fans.
Ripley is a former England Under 19 International and he has also had experience in the Scottish Premiership while on-loan at Motherwell.
Burton Albion manager Nigel Clough said: “Connor gained good experience last year in League One. He’s 24, not an 18/19-year-old, and we think he will complement the other two keepers we have got. He will fight for the No 1 place with Stephen Bywater. There are no guarantees, he knows that, but he wants to play Championship football.
“The good thing is that when he’s gone out on loan he’s played games. We needed a goalkeeper in and we didn’t want to take one who hadn’t got first team experience. Some young goalkeepers don’t go out on loan and stay at their clubs but although Connor hasn’t played in the Championship he’s got plenty of experience in League One and the Scottish Premiership so he should be able to cope with it - so we are delighted he’s joining us for the season.”
Ripley said: “It’s another step in my career that I’m happy to make. I’m not here to make the numbers up, I’m here to play games – that’s the sole reason of the loan deal and I want to play as many games as possible. They have two very good, highly-rated goalkeepers here and at the end of the day I’m here to fight for my position and do what I can to play the games. Ultimately, the manager picks the team, all I can do is train hard and play hard as well.”