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Last Updated: Saturday January 20 2007 11:49 GMT

Sportsround meets Micah Richards

Micah Richards

Micah Richards is one of the rising stars of football, after starring for Manchester City and playing for England at the age of just 18.

He's also been at the centre of rumours linking him to a mega-money move to Chelsea, perhaps for a transfer fee as big as 20m!

Sportsround went along to meet up with Micah to find out more about his fantastic success so far, and what's next for the future superstar.

You're being talked about as a big upcoming star, but how hard have you had to work to get this far?

I've had to work hard, but I think I owe a lot of it to my dad. He's been taking me since I was seven years old to all the different teams that I have played for. My family have been behind me. It takes a lot of time and effort really.

You were spotted when you were only seven years old. Did that mean you couldn't do the things your mates did?

To be honest I do hang out with my friends, but then you have to know when to focus on what you have to do.

What did it feel like to go from shirt number 45 to shirt number two?

That was one of the best feelings because when people are reading the programme and your name is second on the list they think you're an important player, so that made me happy, definitely.

Micah Richards
Micah Richards in action for England against Holland

And then you played for England. What was that day like?

It was one of the best days of my life, stepping out with all the big guns like Rio Ferdinand, John Terry and Ashley Cole. It was an honour to be playing with those players.

What do you think you bring to the England squad that no-one else has got?

I wouldn't say no-one else has got it, but a bit of pace, a bit of power, heading ability - a bit of everything really.

So when people say "He's the new such and such" do you want to be the new anyone?

I'm Micah Richards. I want to be my own player. I want people to say "I want to be like him".

What are your goals for the next couple of years?

Hopefully I'll get called up for the England squad next month for the friendly against Spain, and then hopefully stay in the squad after that and then become a first-team regular.

Do you get advice from the older guys in the squad?

Keep working hard, keep smiling and enjoy it because it's one of the best lives you can have.

Were you a bit starstruck? What was it like being the new boy on the first day?

It was hard at first, but Philip Neville took me under his wing and introduced me to the lads. I knew Rio Ferdinand as well too, so it was all right.

When you first turn up for England do you get introduced to everyone?

You just turn up and nothing happens. I suppose when you play against them you get to know their faces, so you just say hello to them.

There have been lots of rumours that you're moving clubs for big money, is that true?

No I'm happy at Manchester City football club. They've given me my chance, and I'd like to think I'm taking it and I'm playing for England. There's not much more I can want really.

So how does it feel when people say you're a big star and you're going to get even better?

It makes me feel good. I'm still only 18 years old though, so maybe in five years I can be a really good player.

You get quite passionate on the pitch, how important is it to get fired up for a match?

It's different for different players. That's how I like to play, and that's how Joey Barton likes to play. I try to learn from him as he is one of the big players at our club.



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