Some things in life are more important than football. Not many things, but some. And one man who knows that better than anyone is Fernando Ricksen.

The combative, passionate Dutchman has a very well-publicised case of Motor Neurone Disease. It’s something, that in his own imitable style, he has never shied away from facing.

Since being diagnosed Ricksen has always endeavoured to raise money and awareness.

Fernando Ricksen was notoriously passionate in Old Firm matches. (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)

Rangers fans have always been by his side. But there’s another crowd Fernando wanted to thank for their support too. Celtic fans.

If you’d have told firebrand Ricksen he’d be a symbol of unity amongst two of the globe’s fiercest rivals during his Ibrox days, he’d have probably have fell about laughing.

But football’s a funny old game, and so is life in many ways. Ricksen praised the two Glasgow club’s fans via a tweet on biographer Vincent de Vries’ Twitter account.

Fairplay Fernando Ricksen. Say what you like, but there’s scarcely been two more passionate sets of fans that us and our rivals.

Ricksen spent six years at Ibrox, securing seven trophies. He was famous for his combative style, particularly in Old Firm matches, clashing regularly with Celtic rival Alan Thompson.

Another ex-Rangers player also suffers from MND. A testimonial was held for David Hagen back in October.

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