FA `keen' to stage charity match

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The Independent Online
The Football Association remain "very keen" on honouring the memory of Diana, Princess of Wales, by staging a charity match to raise funds for the Bosnian victims of landmines.

"The Princess was obviously very keen on the landmines issue and we were having talks with charity organisations before she died," a spokeswoman said. "No details were finalised, but we are still very keen to pursue the idea of staging the game."

Scotland will play their World Cup qualifying match against Belarus at Pittodrie on Saturday at 3pm as originally planned, despite the fact that it will clash with the funeral of Princess Diana.

"This has not been an easy decision for the international committee to reach, the Scottish FA chief executive Jim Farry said, "but there are insurmountable logistical difficulties. "We are extremely conscious of the mood of the nation and trust people will try to understand our position and how difficult it has been to arrive at this decision."

Players from both sides will wear black armbands and observe a minute's silence.

Glasgow have been frustrated in their attempts to play their rugby union Heineken European Cup game against Ulster on Friday night. The tournament organisers, ERC Ltd, have refused a request by both clubs for dispensation to stage the match on schedule with a two-minute silence before kick-off. The match will be played on Monday.

Rearranged weekend football and rugby union fixtures, page 24

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