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Wednesday, June 10, 1998 Published at 04:24 GMT 05:24 UK


Sorry for attacking Ulrika - Collymore

Stan Collymore: "My actions were totally reprehensible"

The Aston Villa and England striker, Stan Collymore, has apologised after he attacked his girlfriend, TV star Ulrika Jonsson, in a Paris bar.

Ms Jonsson was in the Auld Alliance bar with Glasgow Rangers star Ally McCoist when Mr Collymore turned up demanding that she leave.

The argument turned violent and the 27-year-old allegedly dragged her to the floor and aimed kicks at her head.

Agent Paul Stretford: Stan has apologised to Ulrika profusely
Mr Collymore's agent Paul Stretford said the footballer was "beside himself with remorse".

Ms Jonsson, 30, has now returned to the UK.

Stan Collymore later said in a statement: "A stupid and silly argument had developed throughout the course of the day between myself and Ulrika, someone who I have realised for some time is very special to me."

'Jealousy and drink were the real reasons'

He added: "My actions were totally reprehensible, something I am not proud of and finding very difficult to come to terms with.

"In a fit of petulant temper I struck out at the girl I love and immediately regretted my actions, but by then it was too late.

[ image: Ulrika: Back in the UK]
Ulrika: Back in the UK
"I could hide behind a facade of excuses and no comments but petulance, jealousy and possibly having too much to drink are the real reasons behind this regrettable and avoidable incident."

Ms Jonsson arrived at the bar at around 11pm with Ally McCoist, according to a TV news report.

The pub was packed with Scottish fans and Ms Jonsson took refuge behind the bar to escape the crowds where she began to pull pints for fans, said reporter Martin Geissler, who witnessed the incident.

BBC correspondent Abigail Trow: fans threw beer at Collymore
About an hour later Stan Collymore arrived, and after fans threw a pint over him he asked Ms Jonsson to leave, the reporter said.

It was when she refused that the attack took place.

"He dragged her out of the bar into a back room, pushed her to the ground and aimed kicks at her head," said Mr Geissler.

'Real rage'

"She was lying on the ground screaming and bar staff then grabbed Collymore and threw him out.

"He was in a real rage but came back later on to make the peace but then left alone a short while later.

"Ulrika left 15 minutes later in a chauffeur driven car."

In April Mr Collymore was cleared by magistrates of assaulting his former girlfriend Michelle Green.

Miss Green, 23, claimed the 7m player struck her during a late-night visit three days before Christmas last year after they rowed over access to their two-year-old son.

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