Leander Dendoncker – Fantasy Football Potential

Wolves have the made the signing of Leander Dendoncker for a fee worth in the region of £13.5 million. The Belgian was on loan at Molineux last season and can play centre back or defensive midfield, for Nuno Espirito Santo’s side. He follows Raul Jimenez in making his move permanent after a successful loan spell which lead to Wolves triggering the obligation to buy.

Wolves Sporting Director, Kevin Thelwell has said:

“He came a bit later in the window and took time to settle and get used to the way in which we operate and play. But since he broke in to the first team he’s been terrific. He’s been very professional, very honest and very hardworking, so he fits the team perfectly. I believe a lot of the success we had in the second part of he season was down to a big contribution from him.”

Player History

Dendoncker joins Wolves from Anderlecht and previously hasn’t played for any other senior side. He joined Anderlecht in 2009 from fellow Belgian side KSV Roeselare, after spending six years at the club. At this point, Dendoncker is still only 14 years old so he needed to wait a few years for his senior debut.

As he was rising through the ranks at Anderlecht, the utility player was doing similar with the Belgian youth teams. He played ten times for the u16s, eight times for the u17s and nine times for the u19s before he made his Belgian Pro League for Anderlecht.

He did feature in the 2013/14 Belgian Super Cup, making a single appearance, which ultimately earned him a winners medal after the team went on to win e tournament. The following August was when he made his League debut. He played 38 matches in all competitions that season, including a run to the Super Cup final again, but this time they wouldn’t come away with any silverware.

Concurrently, Dendoncker was promoted to the Belgium u21s where he managed five appearances, scoring a respectable three goals in the process. This, alongside his domestic form, caught the eye of Belgium manager Marc Wilmots, who called him up for the first time with his Anderlecht team mate Youri Tielemans, who is now tearing it up for Leicester.

After two more impressive seasons in Belgium with Anderlecht, Dendoncker was attracting attention across Europe and he had the chance to showcase himself at the World Cup in Russia. However, new Belgium boss, Roberto Martinez, preferred other options to him and he played just one match, which was the dead rubber against England.

Embed from Getty Images

Despite interest elsewhere, Dendoncker made his move to England and recently promoted Wolves, who were only getting better with their cute signings. He failed to make a huge impact in the first half of the season but once he got into the team, Espírito Santo couldn’t drop him. He played in 26 games last season, 19 of which came in England’s top flight.

Fantasy Football Potential

A defensive midfielder who occasionally plays at the back, would initially seem a player to be avoided considering the lack of points for defensive midfielders in FPL. However he has been priced at £4.5m and everybody loves a £4.5m midfielder in their team. Everyone looks for that enabler in their midfield who will score the double figure return a couple of times a season.

The likes of Tom Carroll and Ashley Westwood spring to mind as previous successful £4.5m selections, and Dendoncker could follow in their footsteps. He scored 48 points last season in just under 1500 minutes of Premier League football. If he played the full season, he would have easily surpassed the 100 point mark, which is brilliant for someone at his price.

Given his defensive responsibilities, you’d think he’d be picking up bookings left, right and centre but the Belgian was only booked once last season, which is a bonus for any potential owners. FPL managers have already took a shine to him, with 11.8% of FPL squads having his name in it. Overall he is a strong contender for your fifth midfielder slot and isn’t one to be snubbed at just because of his position.

Written by, Harry Clark (@HarryClark_)

Leave a Reply

You may also like...