According to the latest reports from Birmingham Mail, Celtic have been shockingly linked with a move for Aston Villa defender Micah Richards. This story is really puzzling given how Birmingham Mail has just depended on social media sources to justify writing this story. The 30-year-old centre back has struggled with injury and fitness issues and has remained out of the picture at Villa Park for quite some time now. His last appearance for them was way back in October of 2016 against Wolverhampton Wanderers.
The defender has even failed to get into matchday squads and the last time he was on the bench was in September of 2017. That just shows the former Premier League winner’s situation, and it would be interesting to see how keen the Hoops would be to get this deal done.
If left to us, Celtic should probably stay away from this move. Maybe they are hoping that if Richards gets himself fully fit, he could be a viable option given his experience and the fact that he is still just 30. But in our opinion, a player who hasn’t played competitive football in over two years should be avoided.
Richards’ best years came with Manchester City, and he was a powerful centre half and an occasional right back as well. His strength and pace set him apart, and the defender even made it to the Three Lions squad. Richards had 13 appearances for England and was seen as a top player when he was at his best. However, the centre back has struggled with various injuries in the past and is definitely out of the picture at Villa Park.
When new boss Dean Smith came in October, he commented on Richards’ situation and was quoted as saying, ”Micah has trained with us but he’s not played for a long time so his fitness is not near to being in contention at all at the moment. We’ll see how his fitness builds over the next month or two.”
“He’s been on a special programme. The training minutes he hasn’t had so far. We’ll see how his body adapts to those training minutes as we go.”
The defender is in the final six months of his contract and we think barring a miracle, the Villans won’t offer him a new deal beyond this summer.
Celtic are going to need a new centre back or two by next season as Dedryck Boyata and Filip Benkovic are likely to leave the club in the summer. Therefore the Hoops should think about getting a defender in the ongoing transfer window to take some burden off from the summer window. However, Micah Richards is definitely not the answer even though he might have an experience of playing in over 200 games in the Premier League.
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