Stan Collymore gives sad health update on Aston Villa & Sheffield United legend amid dementia battle

Stan Collymore met European Cup winner Gordon Cowans at a recent Aston Villa game
Gordon Cowans pictured during his Aston Villa coaching daysGordon Cowans pictured during his Aston Villa coaching days
Gordon Cowans pictured during his Aston Villa coaching days

Stan Collymore has urged Aston Villa icon Gordon Cowans to “keep fighting” his dementia battle.

The 65-year-old made 527 appearances across three spells at Villa Park. He also enjoyed two spells on the coaching setup and was part of the team that won Division One, the League Cup, European Cup and European Super Cup in the 1970s and 1980s.

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Other clubs represented include Blackburn Rovers, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Burnley and Sheffield United in his 21-year playing career. However, Cowans, known as “Sid”, was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in 2020, six years after leaving Villa.

The former midfielder has moved into a nursing home to receive support as he continues to fight the illness. Ex-Villa striker Collymore provided an update on Cowans to his social media followers.

"As a footballer, he was one of my true heroes," Collymore posted. "A majestic ball-playing midfielder who was criminally underused for England but who drove us to become Champions of England and Europe. Quiet, no fuss, just oozing class and composure always.

"I saw Sid a few weeks ago at Villa Park, and although it was obvious dementia was taking an ever increasing hold, he still chatted, still instinctively knew his role amongst supporters as an icon, signing autographs and having photos, a lesson to every pro footballer today. If he can, you can.

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“Sid, you're my hero, yesterday, today, tomorrow and for as long as I have breath in my body. You are the very best of the sport we love, the club you represented and still represent with so much grace, and the family and friends who will be by your side. All of my heroes are Villans. Keep fighting, Sid."

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