COMMENT by Amir Mir

Micah Richards has barely featured for Aston Villa in the Championship this season after being part of their relegation campaign in 2015/16.

It was reported by the Birmingham Mail on Tuesday morning that the 28-year-old right-back is set to stay at the Midlands outfit and fight for his place in the team.

This news is quite baffling as the senior Villa player shouldn’t be anywhere near the club and in truth should have been sold in the summer.

Despite the wealth of experience, Richards brings to the table, his mindset and attitude last term, particularly for a club captain, was unacceptable.

A lot of unwanted players left in the summer, but Richards is one of the last few pieces of deadwood currently at the club that needs to be cleared.

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Steve Bruce is aiming for promotion and currently his side is nine points off their minimum target, the play-off places.

At a reported £50,000-a-week, Richards should be taken off the books and offloaded so someone else can benefit the team in Villa’s promotion push.

The former Manchester City player has made three appearances in total this season and was on the bench for the 2-2 draw against Preston at the weekend.

One of those appearances came during the EFL Cup defeat against League Two side Luton earlier on in the campaign.

As Villa close in on Barnsley right-back James Bree, the youngster’s addition to the squad should signal the end of Richards’ career in a Villa shirt.

Bree can add more value in an attacking sense than his senior counterpart and be able to provide more solidity than the former England international.

In other Aston Villa transfer news, leaked pictures appear to show the club’s latest January signing.

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