Belfast Telegraph

Villa complete Richards deal

Aston Villa have completed the signing of Micah Richards on a four-year deal, the club have announced.

The 26-year-old defender will officially join the club on a free transfer on July 1 after his Manchester City contract expires.

Richards spent last season on loan at Fiorentina and becomes boss Tim Sherwood's first summer signing at Villa.

Sherwood said: "I'm really pleased to get Micah on board and I'm sure he will prove to be an excellent signing for the football club."

Richards started his career at City in 2005 and won the Barclays Premier League in 2012 and FA Cup in 2011 but found his chances limited in recent seasons.

He made just 10 appearances in 2013-14, and just two in the league, as City regained the title and was loaned out to Fiorentina last season.

The Birmingham-born England international, who has 13 caps, played 20 games for the Viola as they finished fourth in Serie A.

Richards leaves the Etihad having scored nine goals in 245 games for City.

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