'I work every single day at my craft' - Richards blasts trolls and defends fellow pundit Scott over Black Lives Matter abuse

'I work every single day at my craft' - Richards blasts trolls and defends fellow pundit Scott over Black Lives Matter abuse

The former Manchester City and England defender has emerged as an entertaining and engaging pundit but says his credentials are constantly questioned

Former Manchester City and England defender Micah Richards has hit out at social media trolls claiming he is only now on television because of the Black Lives Matter movement.

Richards, who won the Premier League and FA Cup with City and became England’s youngest-ever defender in 2006, has emerged as one of the most entertaining and engaging pundits around English football in recent seasons.

However, despite his popularity among his colleagues and many fans, he claims to receive regular comments apparently suggesting he is only employed as a pundit because he is black.

“You know, I’m in a privileged position, and I did this through hard work,” Richards told Sky Sports after working on City’s 3-1 win over Wolves on Monday.

“The hard work that I have put in is not going to be tarnished. I’ve got people on Twitter, I’ve got people on Instagram [saying], ‘Oh, Micah Richards is only on air because of this whole Black Lives Matter movement’.

“But I have had conversations with corporations that I have worked for way before this, and now I am getting tarnished with the same brush – ‘Oh, he’s only on TV because of Black Lives Matter’.

“Which is disheartening for me because I put in the work. I work every single day at my craft. I have been a professional footballer, I have won the Premier League, I have played at the highest level and I am still getting stones thrown at me.

“So if I have got to fly the flag and people want to throw stones at me, I’ll happily take it because I know I have put in the work.”

Richards raised similar issues last month when some disgruntled fans targeted him and fellow pundit – and fellow former league winner and experienced international – Alex Scott after Matt Le Tissier, Phil Thompson and Charlie Nicholas were sacked from Sky Sports Soccer Saturday.

Ian Wright hit out at what he called “stinking-mouthed racists” who claimed they had been removed in order to introduce more black and female pundits onto the show.

Richards praised Scott on Monday, saying: “She is absolutely incredible, one of the best I have ever worked with.

“It is even worse for her because she is a woman, and she is seen as black as well. It’s double jeopardy, she is in a worse position.

“All you see on Twitter and Instagram is, ‘What is a woman doing working in men’s football?’. She knows football inside and out more than most people.”

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