Derby County have landed former loan star Tyrone Mears from West Ham United in a £1million deal.
The 24-year-old full-back spent four months on loan at Pride Park last season and helped the Rams reach the Premier League via the play-off final.
Mears previously played under County boss Billy Davies at Preston North End.
"We are delighted to complete this deal because Tye is a very good young full-back with excellent pace and potential," Davies told the club's official website.
"We need him for the challenge ahead and I know he is committed to working hard with us because he has the exciting potential to improve still further."
Mears made 17 appearances for Derby last season and scored on the final day of the league campaign in a 2-0 victory over Leeds United.