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Belgian club goalkeeper Van Damme dies from leukemia aged 28

March 29, 2022 GMT
Belgium's Cercle Brugge player Miguel Van Damme is shown on the large screen prior to an international friendly soccer match between Belgium and Burkina Faso at the Lotto Park Arena, in Brussels, Belgium, Tuesday, March 29, 2022. A moment of silence was held prior to the match to honor Cercle Brugge goalkeeper Miguel Van Damme who died following a long battle against leukemia. He was 28. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys)
Belgium's Cercle Brugge player Miguel Van Damme is shown on the large screen prior to an international friendly soccer match between Belgium and Burkina Faso at the Lotto Park Arena, in Brussels, Belgium, Tuesday, March 29, 2022. A moment of silence was held prior to the match to honor Cercle Brugge goalkeeper Miguel Van Damme who died following a long battle against leukemia. He was 28. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys)
Belgium's Cercle Brugge player Miguel Van Damme is shown on the large screen prior to an international friendly soccer match between Belgium and Burkina Faso at the Lotto Park Arena, in Brussels, Belgium, Tuesday, March 29, 2022. A moment of silence was held prior to the match to honor Cercle Brugge goalkeeper Miguel Van Damme who died following a long battle against leukemia. He was 28. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys)
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Belgium's Cercle Brugge player Miguel Van Damme is shown on the large screen prior to an international friendly soccer match between Belgium and Burkina Faso at the Lotto Park Arena, in Brussels, Belgium, Tuesday, March 29, 2022. A moment of silence was held prior to the match to honor Cercle Brugge goalkeeper Miguel Van Damme who died following a long battle against leukemia. He was 28. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys)
1 of 2
Belgium's Cercle Brugge player Miguel Van Damme is shown on the large screen prior to an international friendly soccer match between Belgium and Burkina Faso at the Lotto Park Arena, in Brussels, Belgium, Tuesday, March 29, 2022. A moment of silence was held prior to the match to honor Cercle Brugge goalkeeper Miguel Van Damme who died following a long battle against leukemia. He was 28. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys)

BRUSSELS (AP) — Cercle Brugge goalkeeper Miguel Van Damme has died following a long fight against leukemia, his club said on Tuesday. He was 28.

Van Damme started in the Belgian first division in 2014 but played less than 50 games as his career was disrupted by the disease.

He was diagnosed with leukemia in 2016. He recovered but relapsed and announced in September 2020 that his treatment was no longer effective.

“Words are not enough to describe what we feel, even though we knew that things had not gone well for a while,” Cercle Brugge said in a statement. “Miguel, your perseverance and strength to go for it over and over, setback after setback, was admirable. You are an example of positivism, persistence and fighting spirit. A source of inspiration for everyone who fights.”

Van Damme is survived by his wife Kyana and his daughter Camille.

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