The 27-year-old was one of two players to join Villa on the final day of the transfer window, along with centre-back Jan Bednarek. Wolves agreed to sell him to Steven Gerrard’s side for a fee of £13m, only a fraction more than they paid to sign him from Anderlecht in 2019 (£12.4m).
The Belgian played 159 times for the Midlands club, but his starting opportunities at Molineux were limited.
Before joining Villa, he had been named amongst the substitutes for three straight Premier League matches. Last season, he was left out of the starting line-up for 17 top-flight games, and he remained an unused sub seven times.
Dendoncker wasn’t able to make his Villa debut in Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Manchester City because of a problem with his throat.
Jones has heard that Dendoncker is raring to go following his move across the Midlands, with the Belgian believing that he can make Wolves rue their decision to snub him and instead establish himself in a Villa side with even more ‘potential’.
The journalist told GiveMeSport: “I’m told Dendoncker is excited about the prospect of establishing himself in the Villa team. At Wolves his path was totally blocked but he wants to go and prove a point now. He feels like he’s joining a club with more potential but he has to make it work.”
Aston Villa fans ought to be pretty excited by this insight. It’s natural to expect a new signing to be motivated but Dendoncker possesses an added incentive to prove his former club wrong, and that may inspire him to reach another level.
Perhaps he will hit the ground running at Villa Park in a similar manner to Philippe Coutinho, who may also have wanted to send a message to his former club. Barcelona were desperate to sell the Brazilian, but he quickly showed them what they were missing after his January loan move by scoring or assisting seven goals in first eight appearances for Villa.
Dendoncker will be competing with the likes of Boubacar Kamara, John McGinn and Douglas Luiz for a place in the starting line-up, so he will need to impress Gerrard in training at Bodymoor Heath if he is to get the opportunities that he craves.
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