Aston Villa legend Stiliyan Petrov has revealed the support he's received from Chelsea captain John Terry during his leukaemia battle.

Terry doesn't enjoy the greatest reputation amongst a section of England's press, but Petrov has only good words for the former Three Lions captain.

He revealed to the Sunday Mirror: "Before I was ill I knew John only from ­shaking hands ­before ­kick-off in ­matches, and as a fierce ­competitor.

"We had also met and talked at the ­meetings the ­Premier League hold for ­captains before the start of each ­season.

"But from the ­moment the news came out about my illness he was one of the first to get in touch and he has ­carried on being ­supportive ever since. He doesn't ­always have an easy time with the fans, but I have seen a very different man to that image.

"He has gone out of his way to encourage me at different times - always sending ­messages and texts while I was going through treatment, even though sometimes it might have been a month before I felt strong enough to return them.

"When I was planning this game he was the first to sign up. I rang and asked if he could take part and he just said: 'Tell me when and I'll be there. Who wouldn't want to play in the atmosphere of a sold-out Celtic Park?'"

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