We caught up with Jodie Hutton, who has gone from strength to strength this season. With questions surrounding the season so far, receiving international call-ups and sharing a surname with the Scottish Cafu, you won’t want to miss it.
Words by Regan Foy (@FindFoy)
We caught up with Jodie Hutton, who recently received the ‘Player of the Round’ for her Women’s FA Cup performance against Sheffield United – which saw her score a hat-trick and slot home the winning penalty as Aston Villa Ladies came from behind.
With questions surrounding her season so far, receiving call-ups to the England youth set-up and sharing a surname with the Scottish Cafu, Alan Hutton, you won’t want to miss it.
Congratulations on winning the Player of the Round Award. How did it feel to be rewarded for your efforts on the pitch, and be handed the award by John Terry?
Obviously I’m over the moon about winning the award. I never expected to win it – but it’s a team game and I would not have got the goals if it wasn’t for the the team. The award goes to the team as well as me.
To get it awarded to me by John Terry was a very surreal moment – and I think everyone that was in the room could see I was star-struck when I turned around and he was behind me.
You have received a number of call-ups to the England Ladies youth set-up this season – how have you found that experience?
I work hard in training for both club and country. I’m not a player that’s known to only give 50% in training, I always try and empty the tank.
England helps me to improve myself, and I learn things from being within the set-up and take it back to Aston Villa Ladies and add it to my game.
I’m honoured to represent my country, it’s what most girls dream of. I work incredibly hard at Aston Villa, so to be rewarded with a call-up is great – but if the call-up doesn’t happen, I just get my head down and train and play harder.
You are currently averaging a goal in every two games, with nine in 18 appearances – what’s the magic number before the end of the season for you?
There’s no magic number. I’m happy with getting nine goals this season.
I’m a left-winger, not a striker, so if I score it’s a bonus. Like I said, I put 110% into my game.
Everybody wants to score a goal, and the feeling when you do is indescribable, but my priority is to work hard and help the team.
To a lot of fans, you’re considered the ‘cover girl’ for the future of the Aston Villa Ladies, almost like Jack Grealish is and has been for the men’s side – what’s it like dealing with that expectation?
I don’t think about the expectations that everyone may have.
If I’m honest, if you play trying to impress and live up to these expectations, then you don’t play your normal game and you definitely won’t be playing to the best of your ability.
I just play the way I play, and hopefully it’s good enough.
For fans that aren’t avid followers of Aston Villa Ladies, they often see your name and instantly ask if you’re of any relation to Alan Hutton. Have you ever met the Scottish Cafu?
(Jodie laughs) – Everytime someone comes to me and asks this question it always makes me laugh.
I get it a lot. “Is Alan Hutton your uncle?”. I’m afraid he isn’t.
We aren’t related, it’s just a coincidence that we have the same surname and play for the same club. I’ve never actually met Alan but I’m sure in the future we may meet at the training ground or something.
I’ve always wanted to know if he gets the “Is Jodie Hutton related to you?” question.
The Aston Villa Ladies have had an unbelievable start to 2019 and are unbeaten. What would you put this down to?
I think at the start of the season everybody wrote us off. They didn’t think we would be this high in the table, and we got a lot of negative comments.
But, since then we’ve kept fighting and fought for the results we deserve. Results are starting to go the right way, and we are performing by playing the game we want to play. There’s a massive amount of positive energy within the girls and the coaches and that helps a lot.
Everyone gets on with each other, it’s a massive family and this helps with performances on the pitch.
At such a young age, and with hopefully a long career ahead of you – what would be the absolute pinnacle for you?
In the future I’d like to be a footballer full-time, and that’s my aim.
I hope that one day Aston Villa Ladies can become a full-time team, and that would be a dream come true because Villa has been my childhood. I’ve been here since I was nine – so I’d love to play full-time at this club.
If that doesn’t happen, we’ll just have to wait and see what the future brings.
Finally, who is your footballing icon?
My footballing icon would be Steven Gerrard. The way he was so relaxed both on and off the ball.
The way he was with his team, and how much of a leader he was. That makes me want to be a female player following in his footsteps.