Alan Hutton was the latest player to take part in our ‘One on One’ feature series.
Check out his Q&A below.
Q] Talk us through your Blues goal?
A] Obviously when I picked up the ball, the last thing on my mind was scoring from that far out.
As I was driving forward, it all seemed to open up. I got past one tackle and even then I was thinking ‘I am going to pass this when I need to’.
But the back four started dropping back and, before I knew it, I was in the box.
When you’re that far up, you might as well have a pop.
Luckily it worked out very well in the end!
Q] Grealish v Derby, McGinn v Sheffield Wednesday, Hutton v Blues – which was the best?
A] Come on! It’s got to be me, surely!
They are all brilliant goals. No-one can argue with that.
It’s always going to be a tough choice with those three.
But I’ve got to say me because I really don’t score that many!
Q] How frustrating was it to get the injury at Stoke City – and what were you thinking at that moment?
A] For me, personally, it couldn’t have come at a worse time.
I’d played all season and then to pick up a knee injury like I did was very, very disappointing.
When it happened out there on the pitch, I did hear something pop in my knee so I knew it was bad.
But thankfully when the news came through, it wasn’t as bad as first feared.
I am back now and looking forward to the remainder of the season.
Q] You’ve got several tattoos?
A] I got the first one was when I was around 16-years-old.
I’ve liked them since then and I’ve decided to get more as the years have passed. I have quite a few on my arm.
Is it addictive? It can be, I suppose. I don’t think I’m that bad even though, obviously, I have a few.
I can’t see myself getting too many more, if I’m honest.
Q] Do you miss Snoddy?
A] Of course! I think everyone does – including the fans.
He is such a big character in the dressing room – on and off the pitch.
He put in some great performances for us. We won’t forget what he did for us.
He was always up to mischief around the place, which kept everyone on their toes and created a really fun environment.
I definitely miss him.
Q] Do you still chat with Snoddy about Aston Villa – does he still have a soft spot?
A] He does have a soft spot for Aston Villa, of course he does.
He came here and did really well. He’s gone on and done well at West Ham too.
His performances here at Aston Villa have led to him being established at West Ham.
He’s playing every week in the Premier League and he’s going from strength to strength.
I still talk to him about Aston Villa. We’re very close. I have his wedding to go to this summer. He’s a great guy.
Q] What one quality is needed to ensure promotion this season?
A] I think ruthlessness is the word for me.
It’s about finishing teams off when we’re on top of them.
We’ve had periods early on in the season where we didn’t do that.
We need to do that quicker, especially now in the latter part of the season.
I think that could really help us.
Q] How impressed have you been with Dean Smith – and how much are you enjoying playing with him?
A] He’s been absolutely brilliant.
He is a young manager with fresh ideas. He knows exactly what he wants, exactly how he wants us to play – and he’s put a plan down to work to. It’s been really good.
All the boys have really taken to him, as you can see from performances and results out there on the pitch.
We’re really on the rise and it’s great for everyone involved.
I’m sure the fans are loving it, too!
Q] Do you contemplate how far you’ve come here when you look back at your ‘Bomb Squad’ days?
A] To be honest, I never really look back – I always look forward to the next game, the next challenge.
The manager at the time, Paul Lambert, was trying something different at that moment. I hold no grudges with that. Certainly not. There’s no bad feelings there.
That’s just football. You have ups and downs in your career. No-one escapes that.
The key point is that at the moment, we’re fifth in the table and on an eight-game winning run so things are going well.
I have really enjoyed my time here. I have loved my football here. I am still loving it now.
Q] Outside of the current squad, who’s the best player you’ve played with here at Aston Villa?
A] I’ve got to go for Stan Petrov.
What he brought to the club as a player and as a captain was immense.
He was an inspirational man for a lot of other players here, a lot of young players – the likes of Barry Bannan, for example.
It’s for what he did off the pitch as well as on it, too. Even now, he chats to us all – myself, Jack Grealish, John McGinn. He leaves messages, makes phonecalls to us.
He’s not an official part of the club but he’s still helping it, helping us all.
Q] Favourite ever game for Aston Villa?
A] That’s a tough one!
But I’m going to pick a game I didn’t actually play in. I was injured.
The 2-1 FA Cup semi-final win over Liverpool I don’t think I’ll ever forget.
Myself, Ciaran and Gabby were out injured but we all travelled down as a group with the whole squad. That was special. We all felt a great togetherness.
The boys played a great game, it was a great result, a great day overall. The performance on the pitch was amazing.
Although we didn’t do great in the final, that semi-final sticks in my head. It was a great experience. It was great to be involved in.