Aston Villa swoop to sign defender Richards from Manchester City
Aston Villa have completed the signing of Micah Richards on a Bosman free transfer from Manchester City.
The England international right-back, who spent last season on loan at Serie A side Fiorentina, was released by City after 10 years at the club.
Richards has been linked with a number of other Premier League sides including Sunderland, Liverpool and Newcastle - but he has chosen to sign for Tim Sherwood's side on a four-year contract.
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, who has made 13 appearances for England, has won two league titles, the FA Cup and the League Cup with City but last featured for Manuel Pellegrini's side in a home defeat to Wigan in March 2014.
Losing FA Cup finalists Villa are keen to bolster their defensive options after conceding 57 league goals last season - a campaign which saw them escape relegation by only three points.