Former Crewe skipper Dave Artell has signed for Northampton Town after his proposed move to Port Vale fell through.
The 31-year-old central defender has signed a two-year deal and comes straight into the squad to play Cardiff City at Sixfields in the Capital One Cup tomorrow night (7.45pm kick-off).
Artell led the Railwaymen to promotion via the play-offs last season but was controversially not offered new terms at Gresty Road.
Manager Aidy Boothroyd has been keen to strengthen his defence all summer with just two centre-backs on the books in Kelvin Langmead and Anthony Charles.
As well as providing depth in that department, Artell also brings a huge amount of leadership to the ranks, having played more that 400 senior games and captained Crewe throughout the entirety of last season.
“He is the coagulent, the voice,” said Boothroyd. “He will connect a lot of the players we’ve got here and help them out. He’ll give the whole club a lift.
“I’ve had him down here a couple of times, I’ve bent his arm behind his back and sold the club to him.
“We’ve got a player who has been promoted three times, he’s a senior figure and he knows league two inside out.
“I tried to bring him in earlier in the season and I got knocked back. You then start going through your list of players and sometimes you get lucky, like we have here.
“Port Vale’s loss is unfortunate, but it’s our gain.”