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Ciaran Clark signs season-long loan deal with Sheffield United

Ciaran Clark has joined Sky Bet Championship promotion-hopefuls Sheffield United on a season-long loan from the Magpies.

Clark, 32, was brought to St. James' Park by Rafa Benítez in the summer of 2016 following Newcastle's relegation from the top flight, with the defender having spent his entire career up until that point with Aston Villa.

And the Republic of Ireland international played a huge part as United bounced back at the first attempt, with Clark named the club's player of the season as Benítez's side won the Championship title.

He then became a reliable performer for the next five seasons in the Premier League, and although he missed out on a place in Eddie Howe's 25-man squad for the second half of the most recent campaign, his last appearance to date saw him help the Magpies to keep a vital clean sheet in a 1-0 away win at Leeds United.

Clark, who has previously captained Newcastle in the absence of regular skipper Jamaal Lascelles, has made 129 appearances for the club in all competitions, scoring 11 goals. 

Sheffield United, who are managed by former Darlington defender Paul Heckingbottom, were beaten on penalties in the Championship play-off semi-finals last season by Nottingham Forest, who went on to win promotion and will face United on the opening day of the upcoming Premier League campaign. 

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