Boro tie up Leadbitter deal

Midfielder excited by fresh challenge at The Riverside

Grant Leadbitter: Midfielder has agreed a three-year deal at Middlesbrough after leaving Ipswich

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Middlesbrough have completed their first signing of the summer after agreeing a three-year deal with former Ipswich Town midfielder Grant Leadbitter.

The 26-year-old told Sky Sports last month that he would not be signing a new deal at Ipswich and has now finalised a move to Championship rivals Boro.

Leadbitter joined Ipswich in a £2.6million deal from Sunderland in the summer of 2009 and he went on to score 13 times in 116 appearances during his time at Portman Road.

"I'm pretty excited," he told Boro's official website. "I wanted a fresh challenge and when the opportunity to join Middlesbrough came in, I just couldn't turn it down.

"I just want to play well for Middlesbrough and get the club in the Premier League."

Delighted

Boss Tony Mowbray added: "I am delighted we have managed to sign a player of Grant's quality, tenacity and competitive edge.

"In my mind, we are signing a player who has matured to have a good understanding of the game. Following the loss of Barry Robson, he will ensure that we will retain the competitive experience that we need in midfield.

"We knew that Grant was out of contract and when a player of his qualities is in that position we obviously became interested.

"Hopefully he will be a core player for us in a side that will be pushing for promotion next season."