Former West Ham midfielder Thomas Hitzlsperger joins Wolfsburg

Thomas Hitzlsperger
Hitzlsperger has 52 caps for Germany, scoring six goals

Wolfsburg have signed German midfielder Thomas Hitzlsperger, who was a free agent following West Ham's relegation from the Premier League last season.

The 29-year-old, who made his name at Aston Villa, has signed a three-year contract with the Bundesliga club.

He had been linked with a host of top-flight clubs in England.

"I am overjoyed this has gone through," he said. "This is the start of a great partnership. The club has big ambitions and a coach who epitomises this."

After leaving Aston Villa in 2005, Hitzlsperger has a successful spell at Stuttgart before a disappointing season with Italian club Lazio.

"Thomas is a player who will help us with his professional approach and his international experience," said Wolfsburg coach Felix Magath after confirming the signing on Wednesday.

"I am pleased that he is now with us, because he is a player who can lead the team."

Wolfsburg - the German champions in 2009 - have won one and lost one of their opening two games of the league season.