Hutchinson aims for Malta

He may have been born in Morwell, but Central Coast Mariners midfielder John Hutchinson is setting his sights on representing Malta in a World Cup qualifier in March.

He may have been born in Morwell, but Central Coast Mariners midfielder John Hutchinson is setting his sights on representing Malta in a World Cup qualifier in March.

Hutchinson told the Asian Football Confederation website that he is trying to work through the red tape in time to represent Malta in its June 10 World Cup qualifier against Sweden in Gothenburg.

"We are just trying to get through all the paper work which has been a little bit tougher than what we first expected," Hutchinson told the-afc.com.

Hutchinson believes that at 29 he is no longer in the frame for Socceroos selection, but given he is eligible to represent Malta because his grandmother was born there, he has decided to change course.

"I was very positive about being eligible to play for Malta and when they called me I was pretty excited about it."

Hutchinson was called into a Socceroos camp by then new Socceroos boss Pim Verbeek in January 2008, but has not figured in the Dutchman's plans since.

Earlier this week, Wellington Phoenix defender Manny Muscat, who has Maltese heritage, was called up for the Sweden match.