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Sep 27, 2012

Van Damme to offer apology

Belgium international Jelle Van Damme is set to apologise to a journalist who was left "scared" by his reaction to a question.

RTBF reporter Benjamin Deceuninck asked Standard Liege coach Ron Jans after a 3-2 cup victory over Mouscron whether it would be his last game in charge of the club.

Jans walked away but Van Damme, who scored the winning goal in extra time, stepped in and said: "Stop being stupid." Wagging his finger at the reporter, he added: "Be careful with that kind of question."

Deceuninck said in De Standaard: "At the time, I was too focused on my work to feel threatened but afterwards, when I saw the images, I was a bit scared. I can put it into context though - there was a lot of tension around that game and emotions were running high.

"He was defending his club and he has that right, but I don't regret my question. I'm a journalist and I have the right to ask. Van Damme maintains that it was a bad question to ask but admits he has done too far. He's going to call me. Let bygones be bygones."

Standard president Roland Duchatelet has defended Van Damme's behaviour.

"Van Damme was absolutely in the right," he said. "That kind of question undermines the club and, moreover, there has never been any indication from the club that Ron Jans is under pressure."

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