Fulham have signed Northern Ireland international Aaron Hughes from Aston Villa.

The versatile defender has signed a four-year deal with the London club to link up once more with Lawrie Sanchez, his former manager at international level.

“I am delighted that we have been able to bring Aaron to Fulham,” Sanchez told the club’s official website.

“As my captain whilst I was manager at Northern Ireland, I saw his obvious leadership skills and his qualities as a player which are widely recognised, so I’m delighted that he becomes my first signing of the summer.

“He’ll bring some much needed depth to the squad and a level of commitment and tenacity that forms an integral part of my philosophy for next season’s campaign.”

Hughes was equally pleased to be reuniting with Sanchez.

“I’m delighted to be joining Fulham and am looking forward to working with Lawrie Sanchez at club level,” said Hughes.

“I enjoyed my time at Aston Villa but when this opportunity presented itself I had no hesitation in coming to discuss the manager’s ambitions for the club, which obviously were of great interest to me.

“I’m happy to have signed before the start of pre-season, which gives me the opportunity of being with the lads on day one, when we come back to training next week.”