The imposing defender was a part of the Villans team that slid to relegation last season and he largely struggled in an under-performing XI.
But despite his underwhelming return to English football after a season on loan in Italy with Fiorentina, reports claim West Ham may offer the Villa outcast a Premier League lifeline.
It’s understood a season-long deal is being considered for Richards, whose only appearance for the Midlands side so far this term came in a shock EFL Cup loss to Luton Town.
The versatile 28-year-old may be a solution to West Ham’s problematic right-back position, which has often been filled by winger Michail Antonio.
ESPN claim Villa are willing to let Richards leave as they aim to slash their wage bill.
The 13-cap England international was tipped for a bright career in his early days at Manchester City, but a series of injuries have curtailed his development.