Micah Richards recovering from swine flu

Manchester City and England defender Micah Richards is recovering from H1N1 swine flu after contracting the virus on holiday in Cyprus, British media reported on Saturday. The 21-year-old full back, who has played 11 times for England, went on holiday after helping England reach the final of the European Under-21 championship in Sweden last month. "At first I thought it was a really bad chest infection, or maybe alcohol poisoning," Richards told The Sun newspaper. "I felt so weak that I couldn't move or eat. My friends had to bring me drinks in bed. When I was told I had swine flu all sorts of things started going through my mind. You see on the news people dying of it." His father Lincoln Richards told The Times: "He is fine and recovering well." Fifteen people have now died in Britain from the H1N1 virus, known as swine flu, and the Department of Health said on Thursday the rapid spread of infection in London and the West Midlands was close to epidemic level. Manchester City leave on Wednesday for their pre-season tour of South Africa but Richards will not travel with the squad initially, media reports said. NEWS: Four Monaco men diagonosed with swine flu