The head of the European Commission, who says he is “sad” about inaccurate speculation over his lifestyle, reportedly drank not one, but four glasses of champagne over lunch while he was at it.
The former Prime Minister of Luxembourg, 61, has been dogged by questions about his relationship with alcohol in recent years. In 2014, a Brussels official claimed concerns about his lifestyle and alcohol consumption had been raised by a number of EU diplomats. Eyebrows were raised once again when a jovial Mr Juncker was filmed greeting leaders at the May 2015 EU summit with jocular slaps on the face.
Mr Juncker has strongly denied allegations of heavy drinking in the past. He reiterated this in an interview with the French newspaper Liberation, where he explained the only issue he does have is with fatigue because of the 14 hour days he now works.
According to a translation obtained by the Independent, Mr Juncker assuaged concerns put to him by the paper.
“During our recent lunch, he glugged four glasses of champagne accompanied by a simple salad. But ‘do you think I would still be in this job if I was on the brandy at breakfast?’ he asks. ‘You can forgive a politician for anything, except alcoholism.’”
"He added: 'It really makes me sad and it has even led my wife to question if I lie to her, as I do not drink when I'm home.'”
By Heather Saul