Tim Sherwood: This is what Micah Richards can achieve as an Aston Villa player

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Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood has stressed a key benefit for Micah Richards in moving to the club.

Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood told the club’s website that new signing Micah Richards can use the club as a springboard to launch himself back into the England setup.

Richards was confirmed as a new player at Villa Park yesterday and Sherwood is clear in his belief over what the player can achieve after signing on the dotted line of a large contract.

“Micah has played international football for England in the past and if he performs as well as I know he can for Aston Villa then there is no reason why he can't get back to that level again,” he said.

“Tom Cleverley's form at the end of the season for us got him back in the England squad so Micah knows he will get a platform here to push for that.”

Sherwood’s comments are typically positive, but there are some key questions to consider if Richards has aspirations of wearing the three Lions again.

Where will he play?

It will be interesting to see where Sherwood chooses to use him because he is versatile and can cover different positions.

Richards is a right sided player but right-back is effectively taken care of in the form of Alan Hutton.

Richards could slot into the right sided centre half role, with Ron Vlaar next to him (if the Dutchman stays).

Ciaran Clark is another option for Sherwood to use centrally.

What should be his thought process for the summer?

Regardless of Sherwood’s forward thinking and positive comments, the player can’t get too far ahead of himself.

His immediate priority should be to impress in pre-season to guarantee himself a starting place when the Premier League returns in August.

If he does that, there’s no reason why he can’t grab the attention of Roy Hodgson when he’s selecting his international squads.

Can he stay fit?

Richards had well publicised knee problems, as covered by the Daily Mail, earlier in his career.

He’s done well to stay fit through a spell at Fiorentina and he needs to do so again to give himself the best possible chance of staying in the side and remaining consistent.

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