'My friend never made it home from Rangers match after his car broke down'

John Johnstone, who was training as a mental health counsellor, was found dead underneath a motorway after his car broke down.

Friends appeal after man found dead under M80 motorway following Rangers v Napoli match at Ibrox Handout

The friend of a man who was found dead underneath a motorway after his car broke down on his way back from a Rangers match has appealed for help.

John Johnstone had been returning home from Wednesday’s Champions League match against Napoli at Ibrox when his car broke down on the M80, just after the Haggs Junction, at around 10.50pm.

Stuck on the motorway’s hard shoulder, the 47-year-old, who was originally from Glasgow but lived in Fife, phoned his partner to let her know of his circumstances.

John, who was a week away from qualifying as a mental health counsellor, was then found dead just after 12am in an underpass on Station Road, below the busy motorway.

The underpass in which John's body was found.

John’s friend Paul Murphy has said that he “didn’t deserve this” and has called for anyone who may have drove past the car on Wednesday night to contact the police.

He told STV News: “He was driving home from the game. All we know is that his car broke down on an overpass going towards Stirling on the M80.

“He has phoned his partner to let her know around about 10.30pm. Then nothing until after midnight when his body was discovered.

“The scar on his face is from the tumour. The guy had been through a hell of a time and didn’t deserve this.

“He was an amazing man.

“He was just about to qualify with me as a counsellor and we had our main exam on Thursday 22.

“Anyone who saw a silver Fiesta parked on the hard shoulder on that road between 10.30pm and midnight, contact the police please.”

Paul has revealed he is hoping that his friend’s passing can be marked at Rangers’ game against Dundee United at Ibrox on Saturday, with a round of applause in the 47th minute.

He added: “He has tickets to every game being a season ticket holder.

“I’m trying my best to get word out about doing an applause in the 47th minute for him as he was 47 years old.

“He never missed a home game and Rangers was all he would speak about so I think there would be nothing more fitting than an applause to send him off.”

Detectives are working to establish the circumstances surrounding John’s death and which they said is currently being treated as unexplained.

Any drivers who used the road between 10.45pm and 12.10am with dash-cam footage have been urged to get in touch.

Anyone with information is asked to contact officers on 101 quoting reference 0021 of September 15.

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