One of Bayern Munich’s notable outgoings this transfer window, Chris Richards, is finding joy in England working under the legendary Patrick Vieira at Crystal Palace. Vieira is full of praise for his team’s new acquisition, and his comments were captured by London News Online.
Richards, who is predominantly a centre-back by trade, can also operate at right-back. He will not only provide competition to Marc Guehi and Joachim Andersen but could also afford Vieira the opportunity to play with a back three.
“He’s a strong player who is physically really good in the one-against-one [battles],” said Vieira. “His competitiveness is really high and he loves to win [training] drills. He will bring more competitiveness to the backline as well.”
The 22-year-old center-back/right-back, who also plays for the USMNT, is still awaiting his chance to start but came off the bench for a little more than ten minutes in Monday’s surprise 1-1 draw with Liverpool FC.
Vieira has billed himself as “quite flexible” tactically as a manager, and might indeed look to shake things up on a game by game basis — depending on the specific matchups presented by each new opponent. If the time ever comes for a back three, then, perhaps that’s the moment for Richards to slot in on the right side of the center-back line.
The Richards sale (€12-20m) has been a nice financial boon for the Bavarians, who initially picked him up as a low-cost investment out of FC Dallas. But as Bayern’s back-line potentially thins out with Tanguy Nianzou’s links to Spain, Richards will have the chance to show his old club what they’re missing out on this season.