Tony Adams has undergone minor heart surgery in Azerbaijan – an operation the former England and Arsenal defender has said saved his life.

After racking up 669 appearances and 10 major trophies with the Gunners, the 49-year-old moved into management with Wycombe, Portsmouth and then Gabala. Adams is now the Azerbaijani club’s director of football and recently went under the knife after feeling unwell.

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“After feeling some acute chest pain whilst exercising in Azerbaijan, and liaising with Gabala Club doctors, I went to The Medical Plaza Hospital in Baku where I was admitted for an angiogram, and then following diagnosis of a severely blocked vein, an immediate angioplasty,” Adams said in a statement.

“The brilliant surgeons at the Medical Plaza did a fantastic job – as has been reiterated to me by my cardiologist in the UK.

“I know full well that without the brilliance of Dr Uzeyir Rahimov and his team I would not be alive now: a minor heart operation saved my life.

“I can’t begin to thank Tale Heydarov and all at Gabala Football Club, as well as the Cardiac Unit at the Medical Plaza Baku enough.

“I would just like to say that if you, like me, have a history of heart disease in your family and you feel chest pains, get yourself to the doctor’s now.”

Adams is now said to be recuperating with his family in the UK, while Gabala travel to Borussia Dortmund in the Europa League on Thursday.