SEAN Clare has joined Sky Bet League One rivals Charlton Athletic from Oxford United.

The South London club have paid an undisclosed fee to sign the 24-year-old, who had a medical this morning.

Reports elsewhere suggest fellow League One promotion-chasers Sunderland, Ipswich Town and Portsmouth were also interested.

Clare only joined the U’s from Scottish Premiership side Hearts last August and leaves with two years left on his contract.

The former Charlton academy player, who has signed a two-year deal at the Valley, said: "It's really exciting.

"I'm really happy to get it done.

"It is a club that I've had close to my heart for a very long time.

"To come back and have the chance to do what I dreamt of as a kid, to play in the first team, to be successful with a massive club like Charlton is something I'm really excited to do."

He began last season at right back, despite playing in midfield for much of his career, and found it difficult to adapt.

Clare was used further forward from November and improved, providing three assists before joining Burton Albion on loan in January.

The former Sheffield Wednesday man made 20 appearances for the U’s and played the same number of games at the Pirelli Stadium.

He had an important role in Burton’s climb to safety during the second half of last season under Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink, returning to a more natural central midfield role.

Clare was involved in last weekend’s pre-season friendlies against Oxford City and Salford City, but joins Josh Ruffels, Rob Atkinson and Kyran Lofthouse in leaving the U's this summer.

United finished one position above seventh-placed Charlton last season, pipping them to a play-off spot on goal difference.