Alan Hutton believes that a lack of confidence stopped James Bree from being a success at Aston Villa.
The former Villa and Scotland star, speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, has revealed the “shy” 22-year-old struggled to settle in the “rowdy” dressing room at Villa Park.
As revealed by Football Insider, Luton Town have tabled a seven-figure bid to sign the right-back and he has already held advanced talks with his old loan side over a permanent move.
The Wakefield-born defender joined Villa from Barnsley back in January 2017 but has played just 28 times for the club.
Hutton, who battled it out with Bree for a place in the side, believes the versatile talent lacked the strong personality needed to settle into the squad.
Asked if he was a little disappointed Bree did not fill his boots at right-back, Hutton told Football Insider: “Yeah, because I think he’s got all the attributes to do it.
“He’s strong, he’s fast, he’s good on the ball – I just think he needed he needed that little bit of confidence, he needed an arm round him, that reassurance but the thing is nowadays sometimes you just don’t get that.
“He was a very shy boy, very quiet and it didn’t really help him – we had quite a rowdy group, if you want, so he found it a little bit difficult to get involved in that.
“You’re expected to just go out and perform so there’s a lot of expectation playing with Villa, the fans demand a lot and you need quite a big personality to be able to deal with it so it’s probably the one thing he could improve on.”
Bree played 42 times during his loan spell at Luton last season as the Hatters scraped to survival in the Championship.
He has a total of 94 second-tier appearances to his name.