Defender Jan Kirchhoff joins Sunderland from Bayern Munich

Sunderland have made Bayern Munich defender Jan Kirchhoff their first signing of the winter transfer window.

The 25-year-old centre-back has agreed an 18-month deal for a fee reported to be in the region of £750,000.

Kirchhoff moved to Bayern from Mainz in 2013 and went on to spend two spells on loan with Bundesliga rivals Schalke.

"He has good pedigree -- he started playing first team football at 17 or 18 years old at Mainz and that he progressed to a club as big as Bayern Munich shows he has talent," Sunderland boss Sam Allardyce said.

"He's frustrated at not being able to play a bigger part in Bayern's team in the time he's been there and he wants to experience the Premier League."

Although the 6-foot-5 Kirchhoff has played as a central defender for most of his career, he also showed his versatility by assuming a central midfield role during his time at Schalke.

The signing of Kirchhoff is a timely boost for Allardyce, who experienced frustration in his respective interest in QPR's Steven Caulker and Lorient's Lamine Gassama.