Belgium captain Vincent Kompany has jumped into the political fray by rounding on Flemish nationalist leader Bart De Wever and urging that the country was "for everyone".
"Proud of my team, proud of our fans, proud of our country. Together we can achieve anything," tweeted Manchester City star Kompany after Belgium beat Scotland 2-0 in a World Cup qualifier on Tuesday.
"Belgium is for everyone, but especially for us tonight anyway!"
Kompany's second tweet was a direct reference to De Wever, the New Flemish Alliance (N-VA) leader who claimed a "historic" victory for himself in Antwerp with big gains right across Dutch-speaking Flanders in local polls on Sunday.
De Wever celebrated his win by saying: "The city is for everyone, but Antwerp is especially for us tonight."
Later Thursday, De Wever said he had been amused by Kompany's paraphrasing of his remarks.
"I find it's never a good idea to mix sport and politics. Personally, I have never done it," he said, before adding that he isn't "really a football fan".
Belgium is a federal state divided between Flemish speakers in the more affluent, northerly Flanders and French-speaking Walloons in the south.
A country of 10.5 million people, 60 percent Flemish, Belgium -- which hosts the headquarters of the European Union and NATO -- has had four governments and three prime ministers since its last general election in 2007.