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Last Updated: Thursday, 10 March, 2005, 10:13 GMT
Fans' protest forces Johnston out
Mo Johnston and then Rangers manager Graeme Souness
Former Celtic striker Mo Johnston signed for Rangers in 1989
Former Celtic and Rangers striker Mo Johnston has pulled out of a charity "Auld Firm" game at Hampden after fears of a boycott from Celtic fans.

Johnston was a controversial figure in 1989 after agreeing to join Celtic for a second time only to sign for Rangers.

He was due to play a half for each side in the charity game on 23 March.

But organiser Rory Nicoll said: "Mo does not want to be held responsible for people not going to the game. I'm told he is a bit bewildered."

Johnston, now based in the USA, had been keen to support the event at Hampden Park.

Money raised will go to charities with Celtic and Rangers links - a motor neurone research foundation supported by Lisbon Lion Jimmy Johnstone and the Davie Cooper Fund, which will support a centre for children with special needs.

"Mo Johnston has decided he will not play for Rangers or Celtic in the Auld Firm match on the 23 March due to the Celtic supporters reaction to ticket sales," said Nicoll.

"He would much prefer the supporters got behind the charity event.

"Organizers of the event will replace Mo in the next few days with another headline Celtic name.

"There will be another press conference called within the next week, which will include Jimmy Johnston himself, to appeal to Celtic fans to get behind the game.

"Mo is really annoyed because he was desperate to play.

"He feels it all happened a long time ago and most people would not be bothered after all this time.

"But he knows what is more important and that is the amount of money raised."



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