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Page last updated at 09:45 GMT, Friday, 16 July 2010 10:45 UK

Bristol Rovers sign defender James Tunnicliffe on loan

James Tunnicliffe
Tunnicliffe signed a three-year deal with Brighton in 2009

Bristol Rovers have signed centre-back James Tunnicliffe on a season-long loan from Brighton.

The 21-year-old, 6ft 4ins defender, joins the squad who are travelling to Scotland for a two-match mini tour.

Manchester-born Tunnicliffe first came up through the youth ranks at Stockport County and once had trials at Anfield with Liverpool.

He told BBC Radio Bristol: "There should only be one aim and that is to get promoted."

He added: "I think there's no reason why this club should not be finishing in the top six."

Tunnicliffe made 41 league appearances for Stockport before signing a three-year deal at Brighton in June, 2009. However he fell out of favour after Gus Poyet took over as manager from Russell Slade.

"I'm confident I can play in this league and hopefully play higher one day. Bristol Rovers is my football club now for the season. I want to improve my own game but also finish high up the league."

Rovers manager Paul Trollope is delighted with his latest acquisition. "We feel James is an excellent addition to the squad," he told the club's website.

He added: "He is a highly-rated young defender who attracted a lot of interest from clubs over the summer once it became clear that Brighton would listen to offers.

"It is a year long loan with no recall but we see it as a loan to start, with the potential of a permanent deal to follow."

Rovers face Greenock Morton on Saturday before travelling to Partick Thistle on 20 July.

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