Micah Richards has defended Arsenal’s North London derby postponement, arguing every team in the league would do the same thing.

Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League - Emirates Stadium Tottenham Hotspur s Harry Kane left and Son Heung-min appear dejected during the Premier League match at the Emirates Stadium, London. Picture date: Sunday September 26, 2021. Copyright: Nick Potts
Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur – Premier League – Emirates Stadium. Tottenham Hotspur’s Harry Kane (left) and Son Heung-min appear dejected during the Premier League match at the Emirates Stadium, London. Picture date: Sunday, September 26, 2021. Copyright: Nick Potts

Arsenal requested the postponement of the North London derby this weekend, as they didn’t have 13 outfield players available to feature in the match. Per the Premier League rules, that’s an automatic postponement.

That hasn’t stopped the outrage machine from going into overdrive. Never mind the other 20 games postponed under the new rules, Arsenal’s first requested postponement is obviously the tipping point.

Micah Richards thinks the Gunners are being targeted, despite doing the same thing any other club would do in their situation.

“When it’s Arsenal, everyone wants to lump in, for some reason,” Richards said. “Arsenal have been in great form, and by the rules have done nothing wrong.

“Let’s be honest, other clubs would do the same thing as well. This is not an Arsenal thing.

“If you know that you’ve not got senior players fit, every team in the Premier League would look after themselves, and if they say they wouldn’t then they’re lying.”

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 26: Nuno Tavares of Arsenal controls the ball during the Premier League match between Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur at Emirates Stadium on September 26, 2021 in London, England. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND: Nuno Tavares of Arsenal controls the ball during the Premier League match between Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur at Emirates Stadium on September 26, 2021. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

We’ve already seen plenty of examples of clubs acting in their self-interest using the new rules.

Notably, Liverpool’s statistical testing anomaly saw the Arsenal game rescheduled to a time when they could name Alisson, Roberto Firmino, and Trent Alexander-Arnold again. It was just a shame for them that they couldn’t win against 10 men anyway.

If given the choice between starting Charlie Patino at right-wing and Pablo Mari at right-back (which was the Daily Mail’s suggestion to get the game to go ahead) or postponing it, it would have been bizarre for Arsenal not to submit their request.

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Arsenal fan since a young age, now a season ticket holder who enjoys writing, tweeting and making videos about the Gunners.