Manchester City icon Micah Richards apologised to Manchester United hero Peter Schmeichel live on the BBC ahead of the FA Cup final on Saturday after admitting he once told former Citizens manager Sven-Goran Eriksson to pick Joe Hart instead of Kasper Schmeichel. Richards and Schmeichel Snr were both at Wembley to give their thoughts on the first cup final between the two Manchester sides.
“Many moons ago under Sven-Goran Eriksson, your son played with me at Manchester City, and Joe Hart was there also,” Richards began. “Sven-Goran Eriksson pulls us into his office and says he doesn’t really know who to play out of Kasper and Joe, but obviously I was friendlier with Joe.”
Schmeichel hit back: “Oh so you did it?” And Richards continued: “So I picked Joe Hart. I wasn’t the captain, it wasn’t just me. I was only vice-captain. Richard Dunne made the decision, not me.”
Hart joined City in 2006 after making a name for himself at Shrewsbury Town. The current Celtic star is the same age as Schmeichel Jnr and the two battled for the No 1 spot at the Etihad Stadium after the Dane progressed through the club’s academy.
Hart ultimately won the battle and went on to enjoy an illustrious career in Manchester, helping City win two Premier League titles, two League Cups and the FA Cup before departing the club in 2018.
“Micah, I’d like to thank you on behalf of Leicester City because we went on to win the league title and FA Cup as well,” the presenter added.
Richards had appeared sheepish as he started his apology, with Schmeichel Snr taking the opportunity to throw a jibe at the ex-defender. “You’re normally very, very loud,” joked the former shot-stopper. “So when it’s something that really matters, why do you go [quiet]?”
City were the favourites to get their hands on the FA Cup trophy ahead of the match after already securing the Premier League title and booking their place in next Saturday’s Champions League final. But Manchester United had already shown their pedigree under Erik ten Hag after lifting the Carabao Cup in February.
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