Leon Cort is a Claret
Leon Cort becomes Brian Laws second signing of the day and his third so far.
The 30 year old central defender has signed for £1.5 million agreeing a three-and-a-half-year contract.
He will wear shirt number 18.
Laws speaking about his new signing said:
"He will be a real benefit to us with his leadership and strength.
"His ability is there for all to see. He is good in the air in both boxes and he is one of those old fashioned centre-halves who defends and defends well.
"I think you need that kind of assurance, but not only that, he has Premier League experience of playing with Stoke City so he knows what's at stake and what is needed.
"He has signed a three-and-a-half year deal and we will see his best years, for sure. He is coming into his natural peak in terms of experience and I am sure that will be evident for all to see."
Cort started his professional career with Millwall signing from his local non-league side Dulwich Hamlet in 1998.
A couple of loan spells at Forest Green Rovers and Stevenage Borough followed before he joined Southend on a free transfer in 2001.
Cort then moved to Hull City on a free transfer again in the summer of 2004.
In the Summer of 2006, he returned to his native London when Crystal Palace signed him for £1.25m. He made a good impression and went on to win their Player of the Year Award in 2007.
The next season though he left Palace on loan to Stoke City with a view to a permanent deal which was eventually completed for a fee of £1.2m.
First team opportunities at Stoke though became limited due to the competition and good form of Ryan Shawcross and Abdoulaye Faye.
The summer signing of Robert Huth has also pushed him further down the pecking order
One remarkable fact about Cort is his excellent disciplinary record. The last yellow card he received was for Southend way back in April 2004 and since that time he has not been booked or sent off in over 150 competitive games.