Villa vs Celtic for Stan
Update 26/4/12: MOMS spoke to Villa on the 24th April about the situation regarding the potential match, but nothing is in the planning in the short term. It’s more than likely to be the pre-season after the 2012/13 season. On the same day, the Daily Mail published an article claiming there to be two matches set up between the two teams. The article didn’t have any details. I have asked the club to clarify this article today, but as yet have not heard back.
Today, a senior figure at Aston Villa Football Club has replied back to MOMS regarding the prospect of an Aston Villa vs Celtic preseason friendly (our original email can be seen at the bottom).
Due to the sensitive nature of Stiliyan and the Petrov family’s situation, and the fact it was on the trust of being a confidential conversation with Villa, I can’t really reprint it, as it then becomes quoteable to the press…and they’ve already proved themselves insensitive by WRONGLY announcing Stan’s retirement.
But the club are happy for me to pass on the sentiments of our communication.
First of all, an update on Stiliyan himself.
The Villa rep was with Stiliyan today at the hospital and he’s in good spirits and in an optimistic frame of mind in light of his long and difficult journey ahead. Which I think you’ll be be glad to hear.
The club said that the supporter’s idea of a Villa vs Celtic match shows that we are offering our total support to Stiliyan (both Villa and Celtic fans).
The club has received a lot of support and ideas in how to support Stan, and they obviously have to weigh it all up and make sure the Petrov family are obviously part of anything that happens.
Aston Villa think the idea of a game against Celtic for Stan is a great one, and it will be discussed with Celtic.
Of course, as we all knew beforehand, there is always the question of logistics.
As supporters from both teams have pointed out, both Villa and Celtic have made several preseason plans already – including tours to the USA. There’s also Celtic’s European arrangements to factor in…I’m guessing it’s mathematically impossible now to factor in any Villa European arrangements…(anybody checked the UEFA fairplay league recently to see if we can sneak in through that?!)
However, the club ensures me that if they couldn’t find a solution for this summer, then there is no reason why it couldn’t be played at a later date.
So, in short, the club is looking into making it happen either this preseason, if possible, or sometime in the future. Of course, Petrov’s recovery will influence the timing too.
Both Aston Villa and Celtic supporters should keep pushing for the match between the two teams, which actually hasn’t happened since 1986 (when Paul Elliot was in the Villa team). The clubs both know it’s a perfect tribute for Stan, so I’m sure they’ll be happy to be encouraged along with arranging it.
Ideally, Petrov will be in a decent situation in the late summer, so a match can also take in the respective 30th and 45th anniversaries of Villa and Celtic’s European Cup winning triumphs.
If the match is to be played later, it would still prove to be a great occasion with a fit-and-well Stan playing a half for each team, and then presenting The Petrov Cup at the end to the winning team!
In the meantime, lets keep those 19th minute applauses in matches going.
Stay Strong Stan
PS – A big thanks to all the Celtic supporters I’ve spoken to or have shown support. You have all been unreservedly fantastic.
Original letter to AVFC
Due to the overwhelming support and emotion shown for Aston Villa’s captain Stiliyan Petrov at both Villa Park and Celtic Park over the weekend, many Aston Villa supporters unanimously support the idea of a pre-season tribute match between Aston Villa and Celtic in honour of Stiliyan Petrov at Villa Park.
This would be the greatest possible tribute to Stiliyan Petrov who has served over a total of 10-years at both clubs.
If it is possible to fit in both club’s pre-season calender, money from the fixture could be raised for a major Leukaemia charity of Stan’s choice.
It would be the ultimate tribute to Villa’s captain, a great event to raise awareness of Leukaemia, and also provide a great summer fixture for Villa fans, many of which, think fondly of Celtic.
Half Villa/Celtic scarves could also be sold for Stan’s Leukaemia charity of choice. TV rights could be sold to Bulgarian TV for a donation to the same charity.
One fan had the excellent idea of making the ticket price £19 in tribute to Stan’s shirt number. A one-off, specially designed £19 Petrov ticket could be produced for the game, so fans would have an instant souvenir of the special day.
To make the day even greater, since both teams are celebrating European Cup winning anniversaries – Villa 30-years-ago in Rotterdam and Celtic 45-years-ago in Lisbon – this element should be included into the day to make it a truly special day for fans.
It would be the biggest pre-season match anywhere and most importantly, the greatest tribute possible for Stiliyan Petrov.
[End of letter content]
Initial details of match: http://www.myoldmansaid.com/aston-villa-celtic-stan-petrov-charity-preseason-friendly-match/
Villa & Celtic fan discussion on proposed match can be found on: www.facebook.com/myoldmansaid
Villa vs Celtic for Stan – please share the idea with all Villa and Celtic fans. #supportstan