Aston Villa skipper Stiliyan Petrov starts treatment on Monday for acute leukaemia with club manager Alex McLeish claiming the fighting spirit of the midfielder will help him conquer his illness.

Petrov's condition was diagnosed following tests after the Bulgarian international developed a fever following last Saturday's 3-0 defeat at Arsenal. Messages of support for the former Celtic player, known as 'Stan', have flooded in since the news was confirmed in a Villa statement on Friday afternoon.

McLeish said: "I spoke to him and he was typical Stan, defiant, but I think obviously he's concerned about how it has affected his loved ones. He's a captain, he's a leader, he's a defiant guy and he's fought many battles on the pitch and I'm sure this is another one he'll win."

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#Arsenal
#Stiliyan Petrov
#Premier League
#Alex
#Aston Villa
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