Cape Town - Hull City have pulled off a major coup with the signing of Inter Milan defender Andrea Ranocchia on loan until the end of the season.
Ranocchia, who has who has 21 caps for Italy, will be Hull's sixth signing of the window, having captured Markus Henriksen and Evandro Goebel on permanent deals, along with the loan signings of Oumar Niasse, Omar Elabdellaoui and Lazar Markovic.
The 28-year-old centre-back played 166 games for the Italian giants, although he did spend the second half of last season on loan at Sampdoria.
Ranocchia said on Hull's website: "I am very happy to be here and I am ready to play. It wasn't a difficult decision to come here because I know this team plays in the best league in the world, so I was very happy to have the chance to come here.
"I want to contribute to this team and this is a great opportunity for me to play in the Premier League. It is a famous league throughout the world and I have watched the last three games that this team has played. The coach here is very good and we have some very good players.
"I am a tall defender so I am good in the air, but I am also happy with the ball at my feet. We have a big match against Manchester United on Wednesday night and if I can play I will be very happy.
"But there are a lot of matches left in the season and the longer objective is for the team to be safe. This is what I want to help with."