Richards set to keep Aston Villa captaincy

New manager Remi Garde says he has no plans to hand the armband to a different player following his appointment, praising the defender's leadership and dressing-room presence
Aston Villa captain Micah Richards will retain the armband after impressing new manager Remi Garde.

The 27-year-old defender produced a man-of-the-match display against former club and Premier League leaders Manchester City, who were held to a goalless draw at Villa in Garde's first match in charge last week.

Richards's performance against his old side impressed Garde and the French boss sees no reason to change skippers as Villa bid to beat the drop.

"Yes of course definitely," Garde responded when asked whether Richards would keep the captaincy.

"We have had many chats and discussions already. He is a strong defender, a good guy in the group, an experienced man and he did brilliantly against City.

"He has led the team to this point and I am very pleased with that."

Garde added: 'I don't decide the captain by flicking a coin. The objective is to find the player best at uniting the squad – the man who represents something for the others.

"Captaincy is not an individual award. We play a team sport. A captain has responsibilities and duties. I'm a coach who doesn't think giving the armband to the goalkeeper is necessarily a good thing."