Jazz Richards: Wales defender 'back in the game' at Cardiff City

Jazz Richards
Jazz Richards has won 10 caps for Wales and made one substitute appearance at Euro 2016

Wales defender Jazz Richards says he is yet to reach his "full potential" at Cardiff City.

Richards, a member of Chris Coleman's Euro 2016 squad, joined from Fulham in a three-year deal in July 2016.

The 25-year-old endured a difficult start to his Bluebirds career, but has returned to action after injury problems.

"The beginning of the season was up and down and I got injured, but I'm back in the game now," Richards said.

"I've still got a lot more to show. I think I'm nowhere near my full potential."

Richards returned from a 15-week injury layoff against former club Fulham in the FA Cup in January and has featured in 10 of Cardiff's 12 games since then.

He was signed by former Bluebirds boss Paul Trollope, who was replaced by Neil Warnock in October 2016 while the defender was out with injury.

After Tuesday's 1-1 draw at Blackburn, Warnock said Richards and his fellow full-back were "fantastic".

In December Warnock admitted "disappointment" at Richards' rehabilitation, saying he had seen players return faster from broken legs but the player himself has no problem with his manager's honesty.

"It wasn't so much worrying. I know what I'm capable of and I know if I could go out and show that then I'd be given a chance," Richards added.

Neil Warnock
Cardiff City manager Neil Warnock has also managed Crystal Palace, QPR and Sheffield United

"It wasn't so much worry, but more frustration that I was injured when he came in.

"He's truthful. He wears his heart on his sleeve. He'll tell you how it is.

"If you're doing well he'll tell you. If you're not he'll make sure he'll tell you you're not.

"He didn't see me train until I came back from injury. I came back in and he put me straight in the team so he must have seen something.

"So obviously I've stayed in the team and hopefully I can stay in it until the end of the season."

'I feel accepted'

Richards' move to Cardiff was met with scepticism by a section of Bluebirds fans unhappy with his association with Welsh rivals Swansea City.

He came through the Swansea youth system and made 51 appearances for the club, but now feels accepted at Cardiff.

"There was a bit at the beginning of the season, but I think that's all gone now," Richards added

"I think the fans are quite happy with me and I'm just concentrating on my football and trying to get better with every game.

"When I was at Swansea I didn't have anything against Cardiff so I didn't see any point in taking it to heart.

"I just brushed it to the side and got on with it. It was more off people are on me, asking me questions about it. I just didn't want to know.

"I've come in, I feel comfortable and they've accepted me so that's a positive."

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