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Martin O'Neill with Jinky Faberge Egg
Celtic TV
O'Neill unveils Jinky Tribute
Stephen Sullivan
08 June 2005
 
Martin O’Neill last night described as “a fantastic honour” the designing of a Faberge egg in tribute to Jimmy Johnstone.
 
O’Neill was in London to help unveil the 19 jewel encrusted eggs – one for each of Jinky’s medals during his time at Celtic – which will be further showcased this evening in Glasgow’s Hilton Hotel and, it’s hoped, will raise many thousands of pounds for Motor Neurone Disease Research.
 
Martin O'Neill with Jinky Faberge Egg
 
Celtic’s greatest ever player has become the first living person since the Czars and Czarinas of Russia to have an egg of commissioned in his honour, and joins Admiral Nelson and Thomas Jefferson – both of whom were honoured posthumously – as one of just three Westerners to have received such an accolade.

Sarah Faberge, great-granddaughter of Carl Faberge, the Russian Royal Court Jeweller, is thought to have been inspired by Johnstone’s courageous battle against MND after watching 'Lord of the Wing' and, though Jinky himself was unable to travel to London for last night’s unveiling, O’Neill was there to pay a warm tribute to a friend and former idol.

Said the former Hoops boss: “Jimmy Johnstone is the best player to have ever played for Celtic and the club has a long history of over 117 years. He was just a wonderful footballer - one of the best in the world - and this is a fantastic honour.

“Growing up, I held him in fantastic regard – as did everybody to be perfectly honest. But his performance in 1970 against Leeds United in European Cup Semi-Final, which was the ‘Battle of Britain’ as it were, was just mesmeric and really stands out in the memory.”
 
Source: Celtic TV
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