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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Sep 25, 2009

Rapid Vienna change kit for fiery Celtic clash

Rapid Vienna have reversed their decision to wear an all-red kit in Thursday night's Europa League meeting with Celtic as mark of "respect".

The Austrian club had planned to resurrect the strip they wore in the infamous 1984 European Cup Winners' Cup clash between the sides during the Group C game at Parkhead.

Rapid denied the move was designed to provoke their opponents and have accused former Celtic star Frank McGarvey - who played in the tie 25 years ago - of stirring up hatred between the clubs.

McGarvey is still haunted by the nature of the Hoops' defeat to the Austrians, which saw the visitors' play-acting prompt UEFA to order a replay of a tie Celtic had won.

Wearing an all-red strip, Rapid then beat Celtic 1-0 at Old Trafford in another bad-tempered game that witnessed serious crowd trouble.

Rapid spokesman Sharif Shoukry said in the Scottish Sun: "We don't want to provide any more fuel to the fire or escalate the whole situation. We have been surprised by Mr McGarvey's comments. He talked about us wearing a red strip to stir up a hornet's nest.

"That's not true. The plan now is to show respect and not wear the red strips we wore at Old Trafford. We will wear red tops, blue shorts and blue socks."

He added: "We can't understand Mr McGarvey's position, or why he is making these comments.

"He is making things worse. Something must be done. Someone has to step in, otherwise there is a safety fear for our people when they come to Glasgow."

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