BIRMINGHAM, England – Aston Villa captain Stiliyan Petrov has been diagnosed with acute leukemia, the Premier League club said Friday.
The 32-year-old Bulgaria midfielder developed a fever following last Saturday’s game against Arsenal and underwent medical tests. Hematology experts confirmed the leukemia diagnosis Friday.
“We expect to learn more about Stiliyan’s situation in due course and we have moved quickly to support him and his family,” the club said in a statement.
“Stiliyan is cherished by many and he will get from Villa every ounce of love and support that we have to help bring this to a positive conclusion.”
Petrov joined Villa in August 2006 in a transfer from Scottish side Celtic. He signed a new four-year deal with the Birmingham club in 2009.
Petrov made his 100th appearance for Bulgaria last year in a European Championship qualifier against Switzerland. He played for CSKA Sofia before moving to Celtic in 1999.