Millwall have announced on their club website that they have completed the signing of Derby County defender Alex Pearce on a permanent basis.

Derby County defender Alex Pearce has joined fellow Championship side Millwall on a permanent basis, it has been confirmed.

The 30-year-old will officially join Millwall for free at the end of May, when his contract at Pride Park runs out after they agreed on pre-contract terms with the Republic of Ireland international.

Pearce initially joined Millwall on loan for the rest of the 2018/19 Championship season in the January transfer window, but after a strong stint at The Den, Millwall have decided to make the deal permanent.

Pearce’s contract at Derby County was set to expire at the end of the season and after playing just one minute of first-team football under Frank Lampard, it seemed highly unlikely that he would break into the former Chelsea midfielder’s plans any time soon.

The centre-back has played 16 times for Millwall across all competitions, helping Neil Harris’ side to an FA Cup Sixth Round tie with Brighton and Hove Alion – in which he scored – and to Championship safety. The Republic of Ireland international captained the Lions on seven occasions.

The defender comes with an abundance of Championship experience, having played 278 times in the second tier of English football. 193 came during his nine-year stint with Reading, where he emerged from the youth academy.

Over the course of his career, Pearce has played for Reading, Northampton Town, Bournemouth, Norwich City, Southampton, Derby County, Bristol City and most recently, Neil Harris’ Millwall.