Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has revealed his admiration for Scotland defender Alan Hutton.
Hutton has impressed for club and country in recent months and his performance in Saturday’s Euro 2008 qualifying defeat to Italy did not go unnoticed by Ferguson.
“Hutton was exceptional,” Ferguson told The Daily Telegraph.
“He has come from nowhere and looks as though he will become a superstar once he gets that little extra bit of experience.”
Ferguson’s comments will fuel speculation that he has identified Hutton as a potential long-term replacement for Gary Neville.
The United boss was not the only person impressed by Hutton’s performance against Italy. Christian Panucci, a Champions League winner with Real Madrid and Milan, believes the player would not look out of place in Serie A.
“Hutton is a very good player,” said Panucci. “He is very quick and has two good feet. He produced a lot of good play against us in the game. He looks like a player with a good mentality, too, and I have no doubts he could play in Italy.”