“I had a few conversations with the manager (Paul Lambert) but was given no in-depth reasons why it wasn’t working for me [at Villa] – Alan Hutton.”
One minute you’re made an outcast by your manager, vilified by your club’s supporters and are training with the youth team. The next minute, you have the sun on your back, you’re getting a nice tan, living in a beautiful spot in the world and playing against the very best players in the world. Welcome to the wonderful world of Alan Hutton.
With his Scottish international career also on the line, the 28-year-old right-back’s move on loan to Mallorca was a win-win situation for both football and lifestyle reasons.
Instead of sitting in the stands at Villa Park (or staying at home) against QPR, Hutton was on duty later that evening at the Bernabeu Stadium, face-to-face with Cristiano Ronaldo. Mallorca were 2-1 up at half-time, with Hutton marking Ronaldo. After Mourinho switched the winger to the other flank, Madrid went onto win the game 5-2. After the current international break, Hutton is scheduled to pit his ‘skills’ against Lionel Messi and pals at the Nou Camp.
Speaking from Scotland’s base before their next round of World Cup qualifiers against Wales and Serbia, Hutton spoke to reporters about Aston Villa…
Hutton’s unexpected move
“It’s something totally different, just what I needed. Sometimes you get into a wee dip where things aren’t going your way. Then you need something right outside the box to lift you again. That’s what has happened to me with this move and I’m enjoying my football again. Both the football and the training sessions are very technical, a lot different to English and Scottish football, and hopefully it’s going to make me a better player. I would never have thought I’d end up in La Liga. When the Mallorca opportunity came up at the end of January, I could have gone to other English clubs instead. But I wanted to try something completely different. I’m loving it and, all being well, I’d like the move to turn into something more concrete.”
Paul Lambert Exiling Him
“I don’t really know what happened. As far as I can see, Villa are moving in a different direction, whether it is with younger players or whatever. But it wasn’t really made clear to me. I had a few conversations with the manager but was given no in-depth reasons why it wasn’t working for me there. I was just getting phased out more and more. I wasn’t training with the first team, then I was training with the kids. You are getting nothing out that.”
“I went into a dip because it was affecting everything – my confidence, my life at home, my performance and my Scotland career. It affects everything you do. So it was a hard time. When I was joining up with the Scotland squad earlier this season, I knew it was getting to the stage where if I wasn’t playing for Villa, I couldn’t expect to play for my country. That’s why I went to Nottingham Forest on loan for a spell.”
His Villa Future?
“I can’t see myself going back to Villa and getting a game, so for me it is done there. It’s now a case of me playing every week for Mallorca and proving I’m good enough to play or someone in Spain, England or wherever. I wouldn’t want Villa to be asking for silly money for me in the summer but I really don’t think they could. They don’t want me, so how could they then make big demands? They’ll have to be sensible about it and I’m sure they will be.”
“To get the opportunity I have to get away from it all and starting again has been too good to miss. I’ve gone from doing nothing at Villa, feeling as if I was wasting away, to playing against Real Madrid in the Bernabeu, which was an unbelievable experience. ”
Although Mallorca are involved in their own relegation battle, the result of which may determine if Hutton’s move becomes permanent, as Michael Caine once said, ‘You should always try and turn a negative into a positive’. Well, Hutton has managed that and some. Fair play to him. UTV
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