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Newport County AFC have completed the signing of defender James Clarke on a one-year deal, subject to EFL and international clearance.

Clarke has put pen-to-paper on a contract that will see him remain at Rodney Parade until 2022.

The former Walsall skipper, who departed the Banks’s Stadium in May after two seasons with the club, has spent the last six campaigns playing in the Football League.

Starting his senior career with Oxford United in 2007, Clarke spent two seasons with the U’s during their time in the Conference Premier. He also spent a number of years at city rivals Oxford City, where he made more than 150 appearances. 

A spell under Darrell Clarke at Salisbury City followed for Clarke before he was reunited with his former manager at Bristol Rovers. He was brought to the Memorial Stadium in the 2015/16 campaign and helped the Gas secure promotion to the third tier in his first season at the club.

He spent three further years at Rovers, playing a part in consolidating their position in Sky Bet League One before reuniting with Clarke for a third time at Walsall.

Clarke featured 65 times for the Saddlers, scoring five goals and helping them secure 12th and 19th-placed finishes respectively in the last two seasons.

He will reunite with his former defensive partner Cameron Norman, who he played with at Walsall, during his time at Rodney Parade.

Clarke will join the Exiles for pre-season on Thursday 1st July. 

After signing the deal, Clarke said: "I’m buzzing to have signed with Newport County AFC, I’ve seen where the club has been for the past three years, they’ve been very competitive so I’m happy to get the deal over the line.

“The club has always been competitive, they’re always up and around the ball and I like the gaffer as well. I played against the gaffer a few times before and they’ve always been a team that I’ve wanted to play for.

“The manager has told me what he likes about my playing style and where he sees me playing. Conversations have been positive so I’m excited to get out there and get started.

“I’ve been lucky enough within my career to have been promoted from League Two so I can give as much advice from my experience as possible that I can add to the mix.”

Manager Michael Flynn added: "I’m really pleased that we’ve been able to get this deal over the line, he knows all about this league and has a lot of experience which is always a big bonus.

“He’s a leader and I feel he can offer a lot to this football club during his time with us.”

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