MATTHEW UPSON has joined Championship play-off chasers Brighton & Hove Albion on a loan deal that extends to the end of the season.
The 33-year-old England defender has agreed a deadline day move to the Seagulls after finding it difficult to break the central defensive partnership of Ryan Shawcross and Robert Huth, making only two appearances this season.
Upson did score in his only Barclays Premier League game, netting in the 3-3 draw with Southampton in late December.
Stoke City manager Tony Pulis said: "Matty has been a fantastic professional throughout his time here and an influential figure in the dressing room.
"He now has a chance to play some regular first-team football. It's a great opportunity for both Matty and Brighton, sowe wish him all the best."
Upson moved to the Britannia Stadium in the summer of 2011 on a free transfer from West Ham United, and was a key figure in the side's run to the last 32 in the Europa League last season.
In total, he played 25 times for the Potters, scoring twice.
Under the terms of the agreement, Upson will be allowed to stay at the American Express Stadium in the event that Gus Poyet's team qualify for the Championship Play-Offs.