By Alan Hutton

13th Oct, 2021 | 8:00am

Aston Villa plan to sign Souttar 'ticks all the boxes' after January raid update - Hutton

Alan Hutton has insisted Aston Villa could strengthen their squad with the signing of Stoke City defender Harry Souttar.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Villa star insisted the 6ft 6in (Transfermarkt) giant would offer Dean Smith something completely different to his current options at centre-back.

As revealed by Football Insider (7th October), Villa have set their sights on raiding Stoke for the 22-year-old defender in January.

The Australia international is in high demand and the Potters are expecting bids for him this winter.

Villa currently have Tyrone Mings, Ezri Konsa, Kortney Hause and Axel Tuanzebe as their current centre-back stars.

Hutton, who played with all except Konsa during his time at Villa, insisted the quartet are both physically and technically gifted.

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However, he suggested Souttar’s height and presence could set him apart from Villa’s current stars.

Asked if Villa need to sign a commanding, physical presence like Souttar, Hutton told Football Insider’s Russell Edge: “Possibly.

“I think when you look at the boys who are there, they’re all good in the air. I’ve worked with them, I know they can be physical but they like playing with the ball at their feet as well.

“I think it’s very good to have those different styles of footballers within your armoury. It gives you the option if you want.

“If somebody’s injured, you want to play four at the back, three at the back or something may happen, you’ve got room to manoeuvre.

“I think that was Dean Smith’s plan moving forward. The starting XI was very good but they needed to bolster the squad.

“I think that’s the situation that they’re in at the moment. He obviously ticks all the boxes.

“He’s very physical, he’s there to win the ball and it’s good to have someone like that in your backline.”

In other news, Hutton claims “Dean Smith will be buzzing” after Aston Villa player development pre-Wolves.