Date: 9th January 2012 at 7:57pm
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Two of Derby County`s fringe squad members have had their contracts cancelled by mutual consent to allow them to join new clubs for the remainder of the season. Stephen Bywater and Stephen Pearson have both had the remaining months of their contracts terminated and have joined Sheffield Wednesday and Bristol City respectively where they have spent time on loan before the Christmas period.

Bywater had fallen down the pecking order at Pride Park with the arrival of Frank Fielding and Adam Legzdins and spent three months on loan at Hillsbrough earlier this season and the club were keen to keep him. Bywater made a total of 167 appearances for The Rams and played his part in the promotion season under Billy Davies before falling out of favour after a number of errors last season. His contract was up in the summer but he has been allowed to move on after agreeing to the cancellation.

Pearson had also fallen out of favour and was allowed to move to Ashton Gate on a two month loan before again agreeing to a contract termination. Pearson made 126 appearances whilst at Pride Park with his most famous moment coming when he scored the winning goal at Wembley in the play-off final victory against West Brom. City manager Derek McInnes was happy to get the deal done and told their official website:

‘Stephen has been good for us and is the right type of player and character. He likes to get forward, is a good athlete and is always getting beyond Nicky Maynard. He has scored two goals during his time with us but it could have easily been five or six. He has helped make us stronger, has fitted in really well and become an important part of the team.’