What is the point of Richard Wright?

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I was watching Match of the Day with a mate two weeks ago when one of the games about to be picked and pulled apart was Crystal Palace versus Manchester City.

As the BBC programme does, it showed footage of the odd person or two it feels important enough to mention, normally a manager or a player whereby the commentator talks about their record, fitness status etc... And one of them was Raheem Sterling who was out injured.

Sitting and chatting next to him was a bearded fella who looked familiar and my first utterance to my mate upon seeing this was, ''That looks like Richard Wright.''


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''I think it is him,'' my mate replied. ''Yeah, it's him,'' he continued, ''He joined them four years ago...hasn't played a match, though.''

I was shocked. I did remember that the former Ipswich Town goalkeeper joined City a while back, but apart from the odd fleeting thought when I assumed he'd retired, I had more or less completely forgot about him.

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The Citizens have played 207 competitive games since Wright's arrival at the beginning of the 2012-13 season, and he has featured in NONE of them. He makes Steve Harper look like an ever-present first teamer.

On Saturday against Tottenham Hotspur, Man City were without their regular number one Joe Hart, who had a back injury, so Willy Caballero took over first-team duties. What does it say about a player when an injured one gets ahead of them in the match-day squad?

Why is he still getting one-year contracts every season? If he's not going to feature, even when others in his position are injured, then what his point for being there? Is it coaching the youngsters?

Surely he would just get a job in that role if that was the case. And haven't they already got someone doing that? Or is it more of a case of Wright merely filling up the home-grown quota that City struggle to abide by every year?   

If anyone sums up the non-caring footballer who's perfectly happy sitting on the bench picking up his wages then surely it is Richard Wright. Maybe he's not flash or takes selfies of himself on private jets (or maybe he does, but because he's become such a non-entity in the world of football no one takes any notice), but he is doing what a lot of players are castrated for.

Give it a few more years and he could be up for a testimonial. He could well reach that point as he only turns 38 in November, which is not necessarily ancient for a goalkeeper.

What a preposterous event that would be. But as we've seen, it's not totally unfathomable. 

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Premier League
Richard Wright
Manchester City

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