NEWPORT County AFC manager Michael Flynn’s plans for next season have received a major boost with the news that defender Dan Butler has signed a new one-year contract.

Butler has become a firm fan-favourite since arriving at the club from Torquay United in the summer of 2016.

The left-back recovered from a shaky start under then-manager Warren Feeney to play a major part in County’s Great Escape from relegation after current boss Michael Flynn replaced Graham Westley 13 months ago.

Butler was voted player of year by Argus readers last season and was third in the voting for this campaign and he’s happy to commit to a third year at Rodney Parade.

The 23-year-old told the club’s iFollow service: “I am really happy to sign for another year here at Newport.

“I have worked extremely hard this season and I am delighted to have signed for next year.

“I have enjoyed my football and I think, overall, we have had a good season, but I am looking forward to pushing on now.

“For me, next season is all about improving on what we have done this year both on and off the field.”

Butler has 49 appearances this season and 98 in total for the Exiles, scoring three goals.

But his work off the field has also ensured that County fans have taken the former Portsmouth youngster to their hearts. In a statement to announce the new contract, the club said: “Dan has proven himself as one of the Exiles’ most consistent and ever-present performers since Michael Flynn took over in March 2017 and he has made the left-back position his own.

“Away from the pitch, Dan has been doing great work in his role as the club’s mental health ambassador working closely with the County in the Community We Wear the Same Shirt team by visiting them at training throughout the season and being on hand to offer advice ahead of big games.”

Flynn will be delighted to have secured Butler’s services for another year, with rival clubs certain to have been monitoring the player’s availability.

The manager said: “Dan has been very consistent all season and has earned his new contract. He is a great example of what this club is about both on and off the pitch.”

Joss Labadie, Scot Bennett, Ben Tozer, Frank Nouble, Paul Hayes, Calaum Jahraldo-Martin, Marlon Jackson and Jamie Turley are all out of contract this summer.