Alan Hutton has been left drooling over a tactical switch that has “worked wonders” for Aston Villa this season.

The former Villa and Scotland defender, speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, says that Dean Smith has found the perfect system for the players at his disposal, changing from a 4-1-4-1 to a 4-3-3 setup in recent weeks.

The Villans had been in the Premier League relegation zone earlier in the season but a win against Newcastle United and a draw versus Manchester United has lifted them to 16th in the table.

Hutton says that the current system brings out of the best of the likes of Jack Grealish

Speaking of the tactical switch, Hutton told Football Insider: “It’s worked wonders really since obviously Dean Smith tweaked the formation slightly.

“He did have one sitter and played with the two high midfielders but he’s moved Jack (Grealish) to the left of a front three. It’s really allowed him to express himself, not worry too much about what’s going on behind him.

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“He’s got willing runners, if it’s Douglas Luiz or Marvelous Nakamba, they’ve got John (McGinn) with bags of energy, it’s really just freed him (Grealish) to go and do what he needs to do.” 

Grealish netted his third Premier League goal, and fifth across all competitions, with a wonderful curling effort against Manchester United on Sunday.

The 24-year-old, who has 14 appearances to his name this season, also has five assists under his belt.

In other Aston Villa news, Noel Whelan claims that the Villans have sealed the “best business of the year” after a new deal was sealed.