U’s make Shearer first signing

Scott Shearer is Michael Appleton’s first signing for the 2017/18 season

Veteran goalkeeper Scott Shearer (pictured) is ready to push player of the season Simon Eastwood all the way for the number one shirt at Oxford United.

The 36-year-old is U’s boss Michael Appleton’s first summer signing ahead of next season and has agreed a one-year deal, with a further 12-month option, after being released by Mansfield Town.

The stopper, who will initially provide backup to Eastwood, said the club’s ambition enticed him to the Kassam Stadium.

He added: ”They [Oxford] were a very strong side last season and everything here is geared towards building on that.

“Obviously I know that Simon Eastwood was player of the year, and deservedly so, but my role is to come in, push him all the way and add a bit of experience around the dressing room.

“I can’t wait to get started.”

The Scot has played over 350 games in a career that has seen him between the sticks at Rushden and Diamonds, Wycombe Wanderers, Crawley Town and, most recently, at SkyBet League Two side Mansfield Town.

Shearer’s arrival will allow rookie keepers Jack Stevens and Manny Agboola to gain more playing time out on loan.

Appleton added: “Scott has vast experience and is still an excellent keeper. He knows the score: Easty [Simon Eastwood] is the number one.

“One of the things we talked about is adding a bit of experience to the dressing room so hopefully he is the first of a few older heads who will be really beneficial to the group as a whole.”

Meanwhile, Burton loanee Phil Edwards, who made 38 appearances and scored three goals for the U’s this season, has signed a two-year deal at Bury.

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