Former Wolves defender Andy Thompson has hailed Jean-Ricner Bellegarde following his great debut against Liverpool.

The Frenchman was thrown straight into the starting XI by Gary O’Neil, after signing for the club before the international break.

Bellegarde was the final addition of the summer window for Wolves.

He signed right at the end of deadline day, with Wolves officials flying out to Strasbourg to oversee the player’s medical.

Wolves paid just under £13 million for the midfielder.

And on Saturday he appeared before the Molineux faithful for the first time – and he gave a very good account of himself…

Andy Thompson loved Jean-Ricner Bellegarde’s debut for Wolves

Bellegarde was operating as the most advanced midfielder of a three for Wolves.

Wolverhampton Wanderers v Liverpool FC - Premier League
Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images

He was mainly playing slightly to the left, which saw him link up well with Pedro Neto, who was also excellent on Saturday.

Bellegarde showed great energy, and carried the ball well. He also showed some very neat touches.

He caught Thompson’s eye, with the former full-back saying (Wolves official): “First half, I was very impressed with him, with the way he plays and the positive runs he would make at the Liverpool defence. You could see that he was starting to struggle in the second half, coming into a new league and the pace of the Premier League, just shows you the difference. There were a number of things that would have caused it, but we saw glimpses about what we are hoping that he’s going to offer the team.

“He’s positive, he’s confident on the ball, he’s got good ability at running with it and that’s what you want from the players you bring into the team. I hope he’s going to give us that spark, and he definitely did it in the first half – but he was running around with wooden legs in the second half, because he was suffering from cramp, he couldn’t bend his legs, but he wasn’t the only one.”

O’Neil also praised Bellegarde for his efforts after the game.

Bellegarde will be an important player for Wolves

Wolves have just lost a ball carrier in the form of Matheus Nunes.

But the club seem to have found another in Bellegarde and that will be important going forwards.

You need players to progress the ball up to the final third, and Wolves actually do that quite well.

Wolverhampton Wanderers v Liverpool FC - Premier League
Photo by Matthew Ashton – AMA/Getty Images

It’s just when the ball gets into that final area where Wolves are so poor so often.

Hopefully, Bellegarde is able to chip in with some goals, while helping the attackers ahead of him.

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