Petrov words will lift Villa - Bannan
Barry Bannan claims Stiliyan Petrov's rallying call will ensure Aston Villa secure enough survival points in their remaining matches.
The Scotland international has lifted the lid on the Villa skipper's morale-boosting words after he took time out of his treatment for acute leukaemia to make the trip to the club's Bodymoor Heath training ground this week.
And, as Villa sit just six points above the drop zone ahead of tough games against Sunderland, Bolton, West Brom, Tottenham and Norwich, Bannan claims Petrov is continuing to follow their results and attempted to help motivate the players to pick up the points they need to get over the safety line.
He told the club's website: "It was great to see him. It was fantastic. He is one of my close mates at the club. It was brilliant to see him.
"He was laughing, bantering and telling jokes - just in really good spirits. That's Stan for you.
"He's going through a really tough time as we all know but you wouldn't know from being around him. He's always positive and looking ahead.
"I was down after the Manchester United game and he was chatting to me via text message, having a few words for me.
"He's told us to keep going and get ready for the big games coming up. He's told us we can turn it around and finish strongly. He's told us to keep battling.
"He may be fighting illness but he'll be following us every step of the way, no doubt. We owe it to Stan to make sure when he does come back into it, he's skipper of a Premier League club. That's a big incentive for us, to ensure survival for Stan.
"He's going through a tough time and we're determined to get the results to make sure we keep a smile on his face and give him a lift."