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Fernando Ricksen Rangers tribute match proposed

Fernando Ricksen is in talks about a benefit match between Rangers and Fortuna Sittard, his first club. Picutre: David Moir

Fernando Ricksen is in talks about a benefit match between Rangers and Fortuna Sittard, his first club. Picutre: David Moir

FORMER Rangers captain Fernando Ricksen has revealed his wish to play for Rangers one last time in a tribute match.

Ricksen was diagnosed with motor neurone disease earlier this year, and his condition is said to be deteriorating rapidly.

However, the 37-year-old wants to take part in a game between the Ibrox side and Fortuna Sittard, his first club in his native Netherlands.

Vincent De Vries, Ricksen’s biographer, has said that Ricksen is sleeping for up to 16 hours a day, shaking uncontrollably and having great difficulty with speech. But Ricksen may still be able to make a short appearance on the pitch.

De Vries said: “There is talks for a game between Rangers and Fortuna at Ibroxin May.

“That would be a dream for him to play in that. If he’s not well enough, he’ll be a coach. He can’t wait to go back to Ibrox again, and be in the stadium that he loves.

Ricksen had earlier revealed the extent of his health problems during a visit to Glasgow to meet Rangers fans at the Louden Tavern.

He said: “I am really struggling with my speech. I find it very difficult and tiring to speak. My hands are shaking but a lot of the time I feel fine and if it wasn’t for my speech you wouldn’t know I was ill.

“I am staying positive. Somebody has got to beat this one day, so why shouldn’t it be me? I’m hoping it won’t be the last time I am in Scotland.”

 

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