Football

Richards wants England recall

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Micah Richards has stated his determination to win back a place in the England team.

The Manchester City defender's last appearance for England was in the 3-2 defeat to Croatia at Wembley last October but he believes he merits a place in the current squad.

"I'd played 11 games, been constantly hyped in the media and I thought I had a good chance of keeping my place," Richards told The Guardian. "Then I got an injury and ever since then I don't know why it is, but I can't get back in. I do believe I should be in the squad."

Richards will be hoping a 12th cap arrives before long, with England's next match the friendly against Germany in Berlin on November 19.

If he misses out on the squad for that trip, Richards will have at least a couple of months to impress manager Capello ahead of England's first fixture of 2009, which may come against Spain in February.

The Football Association are hoping to arrange a match in Spain, but have stressed they do not want to play in Madrid where several of England's black players suffered racist abuse in a friendly in 2004.

Richards described the recent fine of £14,920 imposed by FIFA on the Croatian FA after fans abused Emile Heskey last month as "pigeon-feed".

But while he understands the FA's stance regarding the proposed Spain match, he would be happy to play in Madrid.

"I wouldn't make that condition because it makes it look like they [the racists] have won," he said. "It's a nice gesture from the FA because they obviously don't want our players to hear those chants again.

"But it defeats the object. We should go over to Madrid, play the match there and, if there is racist behaviour, Spain should be banned."

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Topics:
Internationals
Football
Manchester City
Emile Heskey
Micah Richards

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