Richards hopes for City future

Micah Richards hopes his long-term future lies at Manchester City, but acknowledges that anything could happen.

Last Updated: 12/11/13 at 08:43 Post Comment

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Micah Richards: Has no desire to leave M

Micah Richards: Has no desire to leave M

A product of the Blues' academy system, Richards is the longest-serving player at the Etihad Stadium.

He has remained one of few constants throughout a period of much change, with City's playing staff having been overhauled on a regular basis since Sheikh Mansour took ownership of the club.

Richards' undoubted ability, coupled with his versatility, have kept him a part of things under a string of bosses, but he appreciates that he cannot take his place for granted.

With competition for places at City as fierce as ever, the 25-year-old knows there may come a point when he has to look elsewhere for regular game time.

Richards, who has 18 months to run on his current contract, told The Sun: "I'd sign tomorrow but I've been here 11 years. I'm getting to that age where I'm not 18 anymore.

"I'm 25 and you really want to be playing every week. If I can do that here, it would be perfect.

"I don't really ever want to leave City, but there might come a time when I have to assess it and see where I am."

Meanwhile Richards acknowledges that his England bridges may be burned, but has no regrets at snubbing a Euro 2012 call-up.

The defender took the decision last summer to represent Team GB at the London Olympics, rather than go on standby for the European Championships.

Richards insists he made the right call for him, with a 'once-in-a-lifetime' opportunity presenting itself.

He is, however, prepared to acknowledge that his England days may now be over at the age of 25 - after earning just 13 caps - with Glen Johnson and Kyle Walker Roy Hodgson's favoured options at right-back.

Richards told The Sun: "It was one of those. Do I go on standby or play in the Olympics? I wanted to go and play under (Stuart) Pearce as I knew him from here at City.

"It was a decision I made, people will always think negatively about it.

"But, from my point of view, we'd won the league that year and the FA Cup the season before. Kyle Walker got injured and I was still being asked to go only on standby.

"Was I wrong for making the decision? Maybe. But I wanted to play in the Olympics. It was a once-in-a-lifetime chance and I enjoyed it. It was one of the best times of my life."

He added: "I still want to play for my country, everyone does. But what can I do now?

"Of course, there's still a lot of time. But time waits for no-one. We've got young players coming through now like Kyle and Nathaniel Clyne.

"So, yeah, time is still on my side. But sometimes with England, if you don't get in when you're young and stay in, they look to go younger. All I can do is play well.

"People ask me the question about getting back in the England squad and I think, 'I won the FA Cup and then the Premier League in 12 months and I still didn't get in'. So what can I do? I couldn't do any more than that."

Any international recognition at this stage would be a bonus for Richards, with the City man's focus locked on nailing down a regular role at club level rather than chasing a 2014 World Cup dream.

He said: "I'm coming back from injury and I've only played a few games this season. So do I expect to be in the England squad right now? No.

"On ability maybe I should be. But if you go on form and if people are playing every week, probably not."


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