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Runje returns to Standard

Olympique de Marseille have loaned Croatian goalkeeper Vedran Runje to his former club R. Standard de Liège.

Olympique de Marseille have loaned Croatian goalkeeper Vedran Runje to his former club R. Standard de Liège for one season.

Back home
"I am very, very pleased. I feel like I'm back home," said Runje of his return to the Sclessin stadium where he previously impressed between 1998 and 2001. The 28-year-old then joined Marseille and helped the team secure a place in the 2003/04 UEFA Champions League.

Barthez arrival
However, the arrival of France custodian Fabien Barthez in January 2004 pushed Runje on to the sidelines and he missed out on the club's run to the UEFA Cup final. "It's wonderful for us", said Standard coach Dominique D'Onofrio. "I'm happy to see that former Standard players are keen on coming back."

European aim
Standard finished third in the Belgian league last season and will play in the 2004/05 UEFA Cup. As well as capturing the services of Runje, they recently signed Belgian Under-21 international midfield player Karel Geraerts and experienced defender Eric Deflandre.