Agbonlahor fined, quits as Villa captain

"I am stepping down as club captain with immediate effect as I do not deserve to carry out such a role anymore," the striker wrote on his official Instagram account.

An academy graduate, Agbonlahor is Villa’s longest-serving player, but has made only 15 Premier League appearances this season, scoring once.   -  REUTERS

Gabriel Agbonlahor has decided to stand down as captain of relegated Premier League club Aston Villa following a number of disciplinary incidents, he announced on Thursday.

“I am stepping down as club captain with immediate effect as I do not deserve to carry out such a role anymore,” the striker wrote on his official Instagram account.

Shortly after, Villa announced that Agbonlahor had been given a “substantial” fine and “reminded of his responsibilities” after he was pictured partying in London hours after the club’s relegation was confirmed.

He had been suspended while the club carried out an investigation.

The 29-year-old had earlier been investigated after pictures emerged of him holding a shisha pipe during a holiday in Dubai in March, but on that occasion the club took no further action.

“I want to begin with an apology to all Aston Villa fans for my actions in recent weeks, especially at a time when it is devastating for everyone involved with the club,” Agbonlahor wrote.

“This role was a huge honour to me and it hurts to have lost it.”

He added: “I agree my performances this season have not been good enough but I will be working hard to make things right! Up The Villa, Villa Till I Die!”

In a subsequent statement, Villa said: “The player has received a substantial fine and been reminded of his responsibilities as a professional footballer at Aston Villa.

“His suspension is now lifted and he will be available for selection from Monday. Gabby has also advised he wishes to relinquish the role of club captain.”

An academy graduate, Agbonlahor is Villa’s longest-serving player, but has made only 15 Premier League appearances this season, scoring once.

Speaking earlier on Thursday, Villa’s caretaker manager Eric Black said that Agbonlahor, who has been put on a personal fitness plan by the club, will not be considered for Saturday’s trip to Watford.

Villa is also investigating centre-back Jores Okore after he said that he was not in the right frame of mind to take his place on the bench for the 2-1 loss to Bournemouth earlier this month.

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