Neil Warnock made his first signing as Leeds boss yesterday by capturing central defender Jason Pearce from Portsmouth.

The 24-year-old has passed his medical and put pen to paper on a four-year contract at Elland Road after an undisclosed fee was agreed with Pompey.

A £500,000 deal took Pearce to Fratton Park from Bournemouth at the start of this season, and the highly-rated centre half made 44 appearances on his way to being named the club’s player of the season.

United boss Warnock said: “He’s just the type I look for when I go into a club at Championship level.

“He fits the bill for everything – hunger, ability and so on. A lot of plusses.”

Meanwhile, Leeds’ former Bradford-born midfielder Fabian Delph has been fined by Aston Villa, along with two other players, for their part in a nightclub fracas during the early hours of Tuesday morning.

Delph, along with Chris Herd and central defender James Collins, were involved in the incident hours after the club had held their annual awards ceremony at Villa Park.

The incident occurred at 2.45am – just five days before relegation-threatened Villa’s crucial home game against Tottenham. The players apologised in a club statement.

Delph, who was on the Bantams’ books as a youngster, returned on loan to Leeds in January but his spell was cut short by injury.