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Inter Milan must step up against Roma

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Mark Hughes rules out Micah Richards sale

Mark Hughes is adamant that Micah Richards will not be allowed to leave Manchester City in the January transfer window, despite reports of interest from Tottenham Hotspur.

Richards, 21, became the youngest defender to play for England in November 2006 but his progress has slowed in recent times, with Pablo Zabaleta proving strong competition for the right-back spot at City.

England manager Fabio Capello tried, and failed, to coax Luke Young out of international retirement rather than call up Richards for the recent friendly against Brazil and with suggestions that his career has stalled at Eastlands, reports have claimed that Harry Redknapp is interested in taking the player to Spurs.

However, Hughes is determined not to lose a player who still has a lot of developing to do, according to the City manager.

"Micah Richards is not going anywhere in January," Hughes said. "He is a big part of what we are trying to do here and we know he can improve. Don't forget, he is still a very young man.

"His football experience is great for someone of so few years and sometimes he doesn't get enough credit for that. But he is nowhere near the finished article. There is a huge amount of potential still to be tapped into."


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