Grant Leadbitter: Middlesbrough midfielder signs new contract

Grant Leadbitter
Grant Leadbitter is Boro's leading goalscorer this season with nine goals from midfield

Middlesbrough midfielder Grant Leadbitter has signed a new three-and-a-half year contract.

Leadbitter, 28, joined Boro from Ipswich Town in May 2012 on a three-year deal that was set to expire next summer, and has made 108 appearances.

This term, he has scored nine goals in 20 games for the Teessiders and also captained the side.

"It was never in doubt, everyone at the football club knew I wanted to stay," Leadbitter told BBC Tees.

"I do my job, do my best and play well - I think I'm a good player and I've got my rewards.

"But it doesn't stop there. I want to keep going and do my best for the football club."

Chester-le-Street-born Leadbitter began his career at nearby Sunderland, making 123 appearances for the Black Cats before following former boss Roy Keane to Ipswich.

He then played 126 games for the Portman Road club before returning to the north east with Boro.

"I'm very pleased Grant has signed his new contract," manager Aitor Karanka told the club website.

"He believes in the project at the club, and that is something I want to see from my players. Grant is a very good example to everyone as a professional."

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