Niemi praise Pearce

Niemi told the club website: “I like playing with him. I like defenders who aren’t raving and shouting and look like they want to do everything on the pitch. He’s quite laid back and calm.

“He just does his job, he knows what he’s good at. He’s very strong in the air and his positional sense is really good.

“If you ask Pearcey himself, I’m sure he would say the same, he just doesn’t look like the same player as when I joined the club last year. Physically he looks fitter; he’s got a six-pack and everything. Visibly he’s a different athlete.

“He’s one of those unsung heroes that every team needs, he’s a very likeable person and is a major player for us.”