Hannover 96 have snapped up Japan international midfielder Hotaru Yamaguchi on a long-term deal from Cerezo Osaka.

The 25-year-old, who has been given the No.16 shirt, will take part in the Reds' team training for the first time on 4 January 2016.

Hannover's Japanese connection

"We believe that Hotaru Yamaguchi has the qualities to make it in the Bundesliga," explained Hannover chief executive Martin Bader. "Hotaru is a Japan international, who's been on our radar for a while. We're delighted we've been able to sign him. Having two of his Japan teammates in Hiroshi Kiyotake and Hiroki Sakai here will definitely help him integrate in the first few weeks."

Yamaguchi, a 24-time international, had this to say: "I want to get playing as soon as possible and help the team. Obviously I'm looking forward to playing alongside Kiyo [Kiyotake] for Hannover 96."

New year, new leaf

Hannover finished the year occupying 17th place in the Bundesliga standings and resume their Bundesliga campaign at home to SV Darmstadt 98 on 23rd January.

The Lower Saxony club are currently without a head coach following Michael Frontzeck's resignation.

Click here for our special on Yamaguchi's compatriot Shinji Kagawa of Borussia Dortmund.