JAKE Wright has joined Sheffield United hours after agreeing to terminate his contract at Oxford United by mutual consent.

He signed a two-year deal at Bramall Lane, reuniting with former U's boss Chris Wilder.

The defender, who had 12 months remaining on the deal, was the club's longest-serving player and comes just two months after captaining them to automatic promotion.

It was the last of his 278 appearances for the club, only two of which were as a substitute.

But last season 30-year-old's previously excellent fitness record was affected by a back problem and a hamstring injury, which kept him on the sidelines.

And this summer the U's have signed fellow centre backs Curtis Nelson and Aaron Martin, while Chey Dunkley emerged as a strong rival during the second half of last season.

Wright first joined on loan from Brighton & Hove Albion in January 2010 and was the last remaining survivor from the squad which won promotion via the Conference play-offs.

Head coach Michael Appleton paid tribute.

“First and foremost I’d like to thank Jake for everything he has done at the club.

"He is a fantastic pro and a first class captain and has the respect of everyone at Oxford.

“But football moves on and we have brought two players in, Aaron Martin and Curtis Nelson, who are experienced players in the centre of defence.

"Jake and I sat down and talked about it, just as we did on so many things, and were both totally honest with each other.

"I said that I couldn’t guarantee him a starting place every week and I fully understand that Jake would be looking for that at this stage in his career.

“By allowing him to leave now he can find a new club for the season and he leaves on good terms and with our very best wishes.”