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Page last updated at 10:47 GMT, Tuesday, 1 June 2010 11:47 UK

Wolves recruit defender Jelle van Damme from Anderlecht

Jelle Van Damme
Van Damme joined Anderlecht from Southampton in May 2006

Wolves have signed Belgium international defender Jelle van Damme from Anderlecht for an undisclosed fee.

The 26-year-old has agreed a three-year deal, with the option of a fourth, to become the club's first summer signing.

"Jelle is a player we've been watching for a long time and I'm delighted we've signed him," manager Mick McCarthy told the Midland outfit's official website.

Van Damme has previous Premier League experience having spent the 2004/05 season with Southampton.

He joins Wolves having helped Anderlecht to the Belgian title, the second time he has done so since joining them from the Saints in May 2006, following a loan spell at German side Werder Bremen.

Van Damme expressed his delight at having completed his move to Molineux and said: "It feels nice to be here with everything now sorted out.

He's older and more experienced than the last time he played in the Premier League and I'm looking forward to working with him

Wolves manager Mick McCarthy

"I saw the last home game with Sunderland and now everything is finalised with my former club so I am happy.

"It's a different challenge for me coming from a team at the top of the table but, with all due respect to the Belgian league, there's a big difference between that one and the Premier League.

"I think Wolves is a warm and friendly club. There is potential here as well. I have a lot of ambition and I want to succeed here."

McCarthy added: "Jelle is a versatile defender who can play in several different positions and also boasts Champions League experience with Anderlecht and 22 international caps with Belgium.

"Playing in the Premier League is going to be a new challenge but from talking to him it's one he is clearly looking forward to and relishing.

"There were other clubs who were keen to sign him but we were able to get in early and register our interest and get the deal done.


"It's also a big advantage that he will be able to come in and spend all pre-season training with the squad and hopefully that will give him plenty of time to get settled in.

"He's older and more experienced than the last time he played in the Premier League and I'm looking forward to working with him."

Wolves chief executive Jez Moxey praised Van Damme's commitment to sealing the move.

"The most pleasing thing about this deal is that from the first time we spoke to the player he really wanted to come," explained Moxey.

"From that moment he never wavered, even with lots of interest from other clubs, and that showed us his commitment to wanting to join Wolves.

"We're delighted to have him here and are sure he will prove an excellent addition to the squad."

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see also
Wolves plan 40m ground expansion
28 May 10 |  West Midlands
Wolves trio set to leave Molineux
14 May 10 |  Wolves
Anderlecht close in on Van Damme
24 May 06 |  Southampton
Van Damme keen to impress
11 Jun 04 |  Southampton
Saints land van Damme
09 Jun 04 |  Southampton

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