Royal Antwerp’s players show public support for Marc Overmars after he was banned from


  • Marc Overmars is banned from having ANY position in football for at least a year
  • Royal Antwerp’s players found themselves criticised for a banner supporting him
  • Come home, Harry! Bayern are struggling and Kane might be jealous of what Spurs are doing – It’s All Kicking Off 

Royal Antwerp’s players produced a show of support and defiance towards technical director Marc Overmars, after he was banned from holding any position in football for at least a year. 

Earlier this month it was announced by the Dutch football association (KNVB) that Overmars will not be allowed to hold any position in professional football for at least a year due to his inappropriate behaviour towards women at Ajax. 

FIFA extrapolated it out to a global ban, starting in January at the request of the KNVB, but Overmars is planning to appeal.

His role as technical director at Royal Antwerp is currently on ice but the first team’s players were keen to show their support. 

‘Overmars, forever behind you,’ read the banner, which started in the stands with supporters before being passed down to the players.  

Royal Antwerp's players held a banner in support of Marc Overmars: 'Forever behind you'

Royal Antwerp’s players held a banner in support of Marc Overmars: ‘Forever behind you’

Overmars has been handed a one-year worldwide football ban for inappropriate behaviour towards women during his time with Ajax

Overmars has been handed a one-year worldwide football ban for inappropriate behaviour towards women during his time with Ajax

‘That is what this club is characterised by,’ coach Mark van Bommel said to media afterwards.

‘That was apparently already the case in Antwerp in the second division. 

‘It is a raw club, but they are one man behind the club and behind everyone who works at the club. That is nice, that does not happen that often.’ 

The gesture from Antwerp’s players, standing in solidarity to support Overmars after a match against Charleroi, was not universally well received. 

But Antwerp as a club have been undeterred by criticism with Overmars still a popular figure.

Overmars quit his job at Ajax in February 2022, admitting to ‘unacceptable’ behaviour after it emerged within the club that he had sent inappropriate messages and photographs to several women who worked there.

Overmars resigned from his job at Ajax in 2022 after admitting to 'unacceptable' behaviour

Overmars resigned from his job at Ajax in 2022 after admitting to ‘unacceptable’ behaviour

An independent sports tribunal last year banned Overmars from any position in Dutch football for two years over the incidents, with one year suspended.

The KNVB then asked FIFA to turn the domestic suspension into a global one.

‘We have a duty to report this sanction to FIFA’s disciplinary committee… which has decided to take over the suspension as of Nov. 16, 2023,’ the KNVB said in a statement.

Overmars is technical director at Belgian side Royal Antwerp, who he joined shortly after his sudden departure from Ajax.

A spokesperson for Overmars told NRC that the former Netherlands, Arsenal and Barcelona winger was informed of the suspension but was not yet ready to comment.



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