Celtic defender Alistair Johnston vowed "our diversity is our strength" as he clamped a social media remark branding the change in the Canada national team as "so tragic".

Canada kicked off their Copa America campaign on Friday with a 2-0 loss to Argentina. Julian Alvarez and Lautaro Martinez both scored for Argentina. 

However, the match was marred by racist abuse with Canada's Moise Bombito targeted on social media.

A Canada Soccer statement read: "Canada Soccer is aware of and deeply disturbed by racist comments made online and directed at one of our men's national team players following tonight's match.

"We are in communication with CONCACAF and CONMEBOL about this matter."

CONCACAF added: "We stand with Canada Soccer in condemning the disgraceful social media posts aimed at Moise Bombito.

"Racism has no place in our sport or in society.

"We are now working with the federation and with our colleagues at CONMEBOL and FIFA to seek ways to investigate the accounts which posted racist material.

"We will continue to use our reach to promote unity and respect."

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After the contest, Johnston responded to a comment on X - formerly Twitter - which cited "undergoing population replacement" in Canada with comparative images of the national team line-ups from 2000 and 2024.

The post from Keith Woods - who describes himself as a"writer content creator and activist" - read: "Canadian football team in 2000 vs. 2024.

"So tragic. Few countries are undergoing population replacement as rapidly as Canada."

Celtic defender Johnston directly replied to the remark as he quoted the post, responding: "What if I told you that myself and the other two ‘white’ players pictured here are the sons of immigrants as well?

"This is Canada. Our strength is in our diversity and it is what makes our country so special - not tragic."

And Johnston was hailed for his handling of the situation as supporters backed the defender for speaking out against the narrative with some branding the initial post racist.

One user commented: "Spot on AJ . Great to see a player speaking out against racist drivel."

Another added: "You’re the heart of not only our national team, but you play your heart to this country as a whole, on & off the pitch This is why we love you AJ"

And a third said: "You are what it means to be Canadian. Strong willed, kind and honest. I feel great pride when I see you put on the national team jersey. You guys represent all of us."