The powerful and versatile enforcer is set to call time on his Sky Blues career at the end of the season after contract negotiations between the two parties broke down.
Despite him having endured an injury ravaged 18 months City were keen to extend the 25-year-old’s stay at the Etihad Stadium, but it is understood that a lack of guarantees surrounding playing time have caused Richards to turn down the opportunity to stay with his boyhood club.
This has alerted Liverpool, who are considering a £7m offer.
The Reds failed with a late January swoop for the England international, but Brendan Rodgers has since remained keen on talented defender as he plans his off-season business.
Richards has been linked with AC Milan, but he is believed to favour staying in his home country which may give the Anfielders the upper hand.
Having made his debut in 2005, the tough-tackling star is currently City’s longest serving player, and is a crowd favourite at the club after graduating from their youth set-up.
City are said to have accepted Richards’ desire to leave.
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