The former right back had to hang up his boots due to knee issues, but says he’d sacrifice his remaining good one to link up with the Spanish manager
Micah Richards says he would give his remaining healthy knee for the chance to play for Manchester City under Pep Guardiola.
The 31-year-old retired at the end of last season due to ongoing knee injuries that saw him play just a handful of games for Aston Villa across three years.
Richards began his senior career with City and, though he won the Premier League under Roberto Mancini, revealed in an interview with The Athletic how much he’d enjoy lining up for Guardiola’s side.
“I would give my other knee to play for Pep’s City,” Richards said.
“A fit Micah Richards would be up there but I am not bitter towards these boys about their money and success.
“A lot of the older pros – I won’t name names – they need the money and are bitter about the money in modern football. In my position, Trent Alexander-Arnold is a £100 million footballer now.
“I am happy for Kyle Walker, who has kicked on under the best manager in the world.”
While Richards’ career ended in disappointment as he struggled with a knee injury, he did lift a league title and FA Cup with City.
Though a big admirer of Guardiola, Richards stressed he thrived working under Mancini, who spent four seasons in charge at the Etihad.
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“Mancini was unbelievable. He wanted the best. Some players want an arm around them but he didn’t care,” Richards said.
“He cared about results and pushed people. Some didn’t know how to deal with that. I really enjoyed someone saying: ‘You’re good but let’s improve you’.
“A lot thought they were ready-made stars and could not be improved. Every player can improve! It got difficult between the manager and players but he won the Premier League and FA Cup, and he will always be the manager who broke the duck and won the title.”
Manchester City have made a shaky start to their league defence this season after losing 3-2 against Norwich City on the weekend.
That result, combined with an earlier 2-2 draw with Tottenham, leaves Guardiola’s side five points adrift of league leaders Liverpool.