Congratulations Andrew ‘Richo’ Richards who play his 250th game for the Rangers this weekend.
Stats courtesy of the Ranger Info Centre.
Ranger #: 54
Club Debut: 2001
Club Captain: 2009 & 2016
C’s Captain: 2019
C’s Coach: 2020-2021
Life Member Inductee: 2017
Team of the Decade: 1998-2007 (Sub #3)
Team of the Decade: 2008-2017 (Captain)
Club Champion (1): 2010
A’s Best & Fairest (3): 2001, 2008 & 2010
A’s Players’ Player (1): 2010
B’s Premiership Asst. Coach (1): 2010
CSL Best & Fairest (A’s): 2008
CSL Cup Champion (1): 2008
Unley High School Graduate: 1998
Words by Club President Ali Gramazio.
As far as club legends go, Richo is pretty far up that legend tree (pole?), or list and given some of the calibre of that company it says a lot about the man.
And that is that whenever this club has needed help, on or off the field, this man has delivered.
I’ve known Richo since my first season in 2007 and back then he was an immovable object at the heart of an A grade side that regularly finished in the top three, had multiple title charges and won the 2008 CSL Cup. He’s not all destroyer though; yes he can head the ball really, really well and yes he’s very good at slide tackles (aren’t they great) but he’s also silky on the ball, loves an overlap through midfield and has scored plenty of bangers at training (I’ve not yet seen heaps in actual matches to comment on his finishing but no time like the present!).
He’s also held roles as assistant coach and more recently coaching and mentoring a fantastic group of blokes in the C grade, even gracing them with the kind of performances we’ve not seen since Mt. Gambier footy trip. They all respect and look up to him and this is because Richo is a great fucking bloke.
So after 249 games I know that Richo is a great player, a great coach and a great man. He’s also a great Ranger. He’s done countless tasks and jobs for the club and been involved in numerous working bees and construction gigs. Without him Rangers would be a little less awesome.
Congratulations on 250 mate. It’s a staggering achievement given the length of our seasons and the sheer longevity it requires to reach it. I’m sure you’ll hit 300 (actually I know you will you told me last week) so I look forward to presenting you with a crisp white polo when that day comes. COYR!
Words by Roshan Wilson
One of the first memories of the Rangers was back when I was in high school. I was invited to the annual UHS Open XI v Old Scholars match (known as the Sue Parkin’s cup). It was during this exhibition game I first met Richo. He was three times taller than me, 1,000 x paler (Colgate came to mind) and looked like he was going to break each kid in half with his go-go gadget legs. I decided to stay clear of him during the game, just run away if the ball came near him, knowing I would end up in the emergency department if there was a 50/50 challenge. The game was played in good spirits and afterwards, drinks was shared, Richo came over to me, and complimented on my running game.
After joining the club, Richo was one of the blokes who welcomed me with open arms. Always included me – had time for chat during training, post games and during pub nights.
As I watched the A’s challenge for titles and win Cups, Richo was one of the most consistent players in the Club and league. This is no surprise considering the line of pedigree – his father and brother both played for Cumberland United where he also honed his skills while playing their as a junior. He demanded perfection from himself, but is always forgiving of others around him. His work ethic on and off the field was great for new members of the club – leading by example.
The competition to win one B&F or a Club Champion is tough, to win multiple awards, spanning over two decades just proves the calibre Richo brings to the Club. He has pretty much won everything at Club and League level. He plays hard, and always fair.
One of the founding members of RangerFest (end of season trips) and occasional poker player (mainly there for the beers) – Richo loves to drink and talk football. I encourage you to ask him about the many stories that have come out of those sessions (some involving llamas, road trips down south, world cup trips, overnight stays in an old gaol, and his beloved West Ham United).
As he passes his knowledge and experience to the next generation of players as a coach, I couldn’t think of anyone better for new players to meet when starting their Ranger journey. Last year was a tough year for the C’s, only winning a handful of games, but talking to the playing group, you couldn’t tell. They were enthusiastic, eager to learn and proud to wear the Ranger badge week in, week out. Richo’s leadership no doubt played a major part in maintaining morale, and bringing a new group of players together to play with pride and for one another.
I joined the Club after the Sue Parkins Cup, but stayed because of blokes like Richo.
Congratulations on your 250th game for the mighty Rangers mate! Go you Rangers!
Words by C’s Captain Fedi El-Daher
Andrew James Richardson. The player coach of every man’s dreams.
9-5 weekdays you will see him at SA Total Pest control, extinguishing termites, but when the sun rises on a Saturday morning, you will find him on the park extinguishing the opposition! A versatile player, who plays for the team.
When we’re short at the back, you will find him as a rock solid CB, heading the ball away from danger. But with newly recruited defenders, you will find him on the wing, in midfield or even as a #9 pacing past defenders and scoring worldies! This man lives and breathes football, with immense passion for the Unley Rangers. Loved by all, feared by the opposition. A genuine bloke with a heart of Gold. 250 games for the Club and it’s only the beginning of his prosperous career. We love you Richo!