Super Hitz is West Ham’s fifth January signing

West Ham boss Avram Grant has hailed the contribution made by midfield star Thomas Hitzlsperger.

After just three games in claret and blue, Thomas Hitzlsperger is fast becoming a cult hero down at Upton Park.

Two goals and three assists have made him instrumental in West Ham’s recent success and manager Avram Grant is convinced that we still haven’t seen him at his best.

“He is very professional and he is a disciplined guy. I think he could play for many teams,” said Grant.

“He is an intelligent player and you need players like that who work hard and he is doing this.

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“I think though he is not showing even 50 per cent of his quality.”

Grant snapped up the 28-year-old from Lazio on a free transfer in the summer, but a calf injury meant that he was on the sidelines until making his debut against Burnley in the FA Cup.

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For the boss, the German is like a new signing. “We made four signings in January, but it felt like five because of Thomas’ injury,” he said.

“He was my first signing and I am glad we have him back because he gives our midfield more balance.

“He knows how to defend, pass and score, so he is very important to us.”

It was something of a coup when West Ham snapped up the international, but as Grant explains, it was just a matter of getting in there first.

“I think we took him so quickly that even he didn’t understand what was happening,” smiled the Israeli coach.

“I remember that I was on vacation and I spoke to him on the phone and said. ‘go to sign and we will speak after’.”

It worked a treat and with Hitzlsperger combining to great effect with Scott Parker in the centre of midfield, West Ham seem to be the envy of many teams in the Premier League.

Grant though is keen to keep him for himself after he was injured on the eve of the season, playing for Germany.

“I hope he will not go with his country in the next international break,” he concluded.

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