Date: 21st September 2009 at 9:25am
Written by:


Vital Manchester City received the following article from Stephen Williams.

Please oh please, I do not like criticising one of our own players, particularly when it is apparent that he is trying his best but the guy is costing us too much. The player I am talking about is Micah Richards who has served Manchester City well but one has to face real facts, the guy is not a top class right back. Fabio Capello realized this very quickly and please Mark Hughes you have to do the same.

Let us look at the four major qualities needed of a full back:

1) Good tacking and an ability to stop crosses coming into the box.
2) Good positional play in respect of your own back four and the opposition.
3) Good passing ability and good ability to cross the ball on overlapping runs.
4) An ability not to give free kicks away in dangerous areas by fouling, shirt pulling etc.

Now I will challenge anyone to assess Micah against these four criteria and to decide that he passes the test as a quality full back.

So let us be brutally honest and assess what has happened to him. He stormed onto the scene against Villa away and had a great impact He was an instant hit and converted to his natural position of centre half. However even though he has natural pace and can leap like a salmon to head the ball, his inexperience and lack of ability to learn meant that he became a liability at centre half, due to horrendous positional play.

The late Richard Dunne and the late Tel Ben Haim found that to their cost; even though both of them were not outstanding themselves. However he was still a great young ‘hope’ and was escalated to the England team at right back and against mediocre opposition was able to be an attacking right back with some success.

However his continued lack of positional play was exposed even more in this position and it did not take Fabio Capello long to realize this and to relegate him both from the team and from the squad. Fabio even prefers old has beens like Gary Neville and do you know what, unfortunately he is absolutely right!

His demotion from England , together with his ‘rags to riches’ history has had the effect of seriously effecting his confidence and his mental state and this can be viewed each week by just looking at his body language. He is under severe pressure and even though he is trying his best, he is somebody who is covering up his defects. The results are blaming other people, giving away silly fouls by shirt pulling or barging and by loping back from up-field sorties rather than rushing back. Shaun Wright-Phillips tries his best to cover for him but only to partial success and this means that Shaun has to track back continually which blunts his threat.

He had two average wingers against him in the Palace match and was seriously exposed. He had Ryan Giggs in the Derby match and was even more seriously exposed and he was exposed against Portsmouth. In that match Zabaleta came on and looked the part including two brilliant out balls to Shaun and two great covering tackles.

Please Oh please Mark Hughes give the guy a rest for his own good and more importantly for City’s own good. I have nothing against Micah and hope he can recover in the future but not by being a fish out of water in our first team. We have a genuine chance of winning something this year and would have won today at Ragsville if we hadn’t been exposed on the right flank; something that Taggart clearly noted and played on.

Is their only me that has these concerns?

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