But then, why should we be surprised?
With dreadful form since arriving at B6, the stain of being Villa’s only Captain to see relegation from the Premier League & with £50-£60,000 a week wages, he’s officially stuck.
To compound matters, the former Man City, Fiorentina and England international is also carrying a troublesome, recurring knee injury.
Whilst often played down, evidence of this type of extended layoff exists since 2007 , 2012 , 2016  & 2017 . Richards’ injury obviously not only restricts any playing time, but means that when he is available for selection, he’s a long way from being match sharp or fit.
And we genuinely wonder why we cannot shift him? Who in their right mind would sign him? That though, isn’t Richards’ fault.
The one factor of the above which Richards has had any control over, has been his performances. It’s hard to suggest that there’s been any demonstration of the hype and promise of the formative years of his career.
It’s also easy to slip into the mistake of perceiving that his playing decline has been a recent problem.
Despite a meteoric rise through the City ranks as a very, very young player, Richards’ development stalled badly.
In reality, he’s been trading off this very brief period of his career ever since.
It is this that is probably the major problem for the Villa defender. Having shown great, head turning promise at 17, he has never matured or developed into a competent defender.
At just 21 he was closely scrutinised for a lack of concentration and discipline in terms of his defending.
The warning signs were also there for a player who even then believed that his best position was centre half.
A flawed belief that has haunted his every appearance in a Villa shirt.
- 29 years old
- Defender: Right back/Centre back (LOL)
- Contracted until 2019
- Weekly wage £50/60000 per week.
- Youngest ever player called up to England (2006)
- 13 full international caps.
- 26 apps / 1 Goal for Villa.