The midfielder calls time on his career as he continues his battle with acute leukaemia.
Aston Villa skipper Stiliyan Petrov has announced his retirement from football after spending more than 12 months battling against acute leaukaemia.
Petrov was diagnosed with the disease in March 2012 and has not played for Villa since, but he is now in remission after being treated for over a year.
“It is with a heavy heart that I am announcing my retirement,” the Bulgarian said on the club’s website.
“The emotions are overwhelming, but the continued support of family, friends and the great people I have come to know will make it easier for me to move on from the only life I’ve ever known.
“I want to try to channel this in a positive way. This will be the greatest challenge of my life.”
Petrov played 218 times for the Villans following his £6.5million transfer from Celtic in 2006 – a club he spent seven years at after moving from CSKA Sofia in his home country.
The Bulgaria international was named captain at the Birmingham club in 2009 following the retirement of Michael Laudrup and remained club skipper this season despite not playing.
His career at Villa Park saw him named Player of the Year and Player’s Player of the Year at the end of the 2008/09 season, after continued good form in the centre of midfield.
The 33-year-old played 92 times for Bulgaria in an international career that spanned over 14 years and included a World Cup and European Championship.
Petrov will now focus his time and work on setting up a foundation for sufferers of leukaemia.