Does report suggest Micah Richards could have a future at Aston Villa?

Villa manager Steve Bruce reacts after a near miss during the Sky Bet Championship match between Aston Villa and Middlesbrough at Villa Park on September 12, 2017 in Birmingham, England.

Micah Richards has not played a single minute for Steve Bruce's Championship challengers Aston Villa since October 2016.

Micah Richards (L) and Ashley Westwood (R) of Aston Villa react after Machester City's fourth goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester City and Aston Villa at...

Micah Richards’ career has all gone wrong at Aston Villa.

The defender moved to the Midlands from Manchester City in 2015 with the idea of getting his career back on track and fulfilling the potential that once made him one of England’s most highly-rated young talents.

Instead, however, Villa were relegated in humiliating fashion with Richards as captain in his debut season, and now he has gone more than 500 days without a game as a meniscus knee injury threatens to ruin his career.

The Mail even state that Steve Bruce is refusing to pick Richards because he cannot play two games in a week – and the Villa manager does not want to disrupt a settled side.

Kenedy of Chelsea and Micah Richards of Aston Villa compete for the ball during the Barclays Premier League match between Aston Villa and Chelsea at Villa Park on April 2, 2016 in...

Yet, in a bizarre twist of fate, the Birmingham Mail reports that the 29-year-old will see his hefty £35,000-a-week wages doubled if Villa win promotion to the Premier League this season. No wonder, then, that some fans want Richards’ contract terminated.

But maybe we are being a little harsh in writing Richards’ Aston Villa career off. He may just have a part to play yet.

After all, the talismanic 37-year-old John Terry is widely expected to retire when his contract expires at the end of this season. The Mail claim that the experienced centre-back wants to get into coaching and has his heart set on a return to former club Chelsea behind the scenes.

Aston Villa captain John Terry in action during the Sky Bet Championship match between Aston Villa and Middlesbrough at Villa Park on September 12, 2017 in Birmingham, England.

Fellow veteran Chris Samba too will be a free-agent come July and his lack of action in recent months suggests Villa will not be keeping him around.

So there will be room for an experienced centre-back like Richards who, according to the Mail, is valued by Villa for his impact on the club’s array of impressive youngsters.

He will have to prove his fitness first though.

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