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Stars and public show support at match for Stiliyan Petrov's charity

Ex-Aston Villa players Julian Joachin and Alan Wright were among those playing for a special XI today Credit: ITV News Central

A host of former Premier League football stars have turned out for a charity football match today, in aid of Stiliyan Petrov's charity foundation.

A host of former Premier league stars turned out to play alongside Petrov, who was diagnosed with Leukaemia last year Credit: ITV News Central

A Petrov XI lined up against a team made up of Aston Villa legends in the match which kicked off at 2pm this afternoon.

The public turned out in good numbers to watch the charity football match Credit: ITV News Central

Premier League stars support Petrov match

Petrov retired from professional football after a battle with cancer Credit: PA

A host of Premier League stars will play for Bulgaria in a charity football match today to raise money for Stilliyan Petrov's charity.

The former Aston Villa skipper was forced to retire from professional football after a battle with leukaemia.

Petrov will line up with the likes of Julian Joachin and Alan Wright, while Steve Staunton, Bryan Small and European Cup-winning aces Ken McNaught, are expected to turn out for their opponents.

Kick off is a 2pm in at the Trevor Brown Memorial Stadium, Boldmere.

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Petrov to play football again

Petrov was forced to retire from professional football after being diagnosed with leukaemia Credit: Martin Rickett/PA Wire

Former Aston Villa captain Stilliyan Petrov will line up alongside a host of ex-Villa stars in a charity match in Sutton Coldfield today.

The match is taking place at the Trevor Brown Memorial Stadium in Boldmere at 2pm in aid of the former skipper's new foundation.

Petrov was forced to retire from professional football following a battle with leukaemia.

Petrov taking time out from Villa role

Former Aston Villa captain Stiliyan Petrov Credit: Martin Rickett/PA Wire

Former Aston Villa captain Stiliyan Petrov is taking time away from his role at the club.

The assistant Under-21 coach is taking time out after finding the job to be "too much too soon", following his recovery from acute leukaemia.

Petrov has been in remission for 12 months and was appointed the position in May.

He said he hopes to return in the future.

VIDEO: Villa runs 310-miles for charity

A football fan who ran 310 miles in 13 days was greeted with a big surprise as he completed the last leg of his run.

Pete Gough, from Shropshire, ran from Celtic Park in Glasgow to Aston Villa where he was met by former captain, Stiliyan Petrov who'd inspired him to run for a leukaemia charity raising more than £5,000.

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Villa fan runs 310 miles for charity

Stiliyan Petrov presents fan with special Villa shirt Credit: ITV Central

A football fan who ran 310 miles in 13 days was greeted with a big surprise as he completed the last leg of his multi-marathon run this afternoon.

Pete Gough, from Shropshire, ran from Celtic Park's ground in Glasgow to Aston Villa where he was greeted by former captain, Stiliyan Petrov who'd inspired him to run for a leukaemia charity.

Aston Villa's Stiliyan Petrov to meet marathon runner at finish

Pete Gough started his 310-mile run on 22 July Credit: Facebook/Celtic to Villa Marathon

A long-distance runner who is undertaking a 310-mile marathon for charity is to be met by one of his heroes, former-Aston Villa player Stiliyan Petrov, at the end of it.

Pete Gough, 40, started the run from Celtic Park in Glasgow on 22 July and is hoping to reach Villa Park tomorrow (Saturday).

"Stan" Petrov was forced to retire from the game in May this year Credit: Martin Rickett/PA Wire

The run, replicating Petrov's transfer from Celtic to Aston Villa, will raise money for Cure Leukaemia. Petrov, 34, was forced to retire in May this year after being diagnosed with the disease.

Petrov revealed on Twitter earlier this week that he will meet Pete at the finish line tomorrow.

Petrov backs Villa following Benteke's stay with club

The former Aston Villa captain, Stiliyan Petrov Credit: Martin Rickett/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Former Aston Villa captain Stiliyan Petrov has backed his former club to enjoy a successful season now that striker Christian Benteke has pledged to stay at Villa Park.

The 22-year-old originally requested a transfer but has since withdrew this request and agreed a new deal to see him stay until 2017.

Benteke netted 19 goals last season as Villa escaped relegation.

Stiliyan Petrov, said: "It's a big boost. The way he performed last season, the way he played, if Villa had lost him, they would probably be in bigger trouble."

"Keeping him is just great. All the fans, the players, the manager, everybody is happy that Christian is staying at the club."

"He has shown unbelievable potential. He is still a young boy and he still has a lot to learn."

"But, if he plays the way he played last season, Villa will finish very, very high this season."

Aston Villa's Christian Benteke (left) Credit: John Walton/EMPICS Sport/PA
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