Villa are saddened to hear of the sudden death of former player Vaclav Drobny.
Drobny, 32, signed a season-long loan at Villa in August 2004 from Racing Strasbourg.
He played in the opening four friendlies of that campaign, the 6-0 win over Klungshams, the 7-2 win over Kungsbacka, the 3-0 defeat of Jonkoping Sodra and the 0-0 draw with Orgryte.
The Czech Republic international had impressed then boss David O'Leary in a trial before heading off to Sweden for the pre-season games.
He said at the time: "This is the biggest opportunity of my football career.
"It has always been a dream to play in England and when I was young I always wanted to play here in the Premier League. To be given a chance at a big club like Aston Villa is amazing."
Unfortunately, he never quite fitted into the manager's plans and failed to make a senior competitive appearance for the club, although he played 24 times for the reserves in their second-place finish in the league.
He then moved to Sparta Prague with whom he won the Czech league title in 2007 before switching to play in a Prague regional division.
Drobny tragically died this morning in a sledding accident.
He skidded off a piste and crashed into a tree in the Czech winter resort of Spindleruv Mlyn, some 140 kilometres north-east of Prague.
Our thoughts are with his family at this very sad time.