Football's journey-man Weston aims for a Sutton United future

Defensive rock: Rhys Weston makes his Sutton United home debut in the 3-0 win over Weston-super-Mare on Saturday

Defensive rock: Rhys Weston makes his Sutton United home debut in the 3-0 win over Weston-super-Mare on Saturday

First published in Football by

He’s played for Arsenal and been capped for Wales but Rhys Weston is loving life at new club Sutton United and is planning his future there.

After joining AFC Wimbledon in the summer, injuries curtailed his first team chances and he made the loan move to Gander Green Lane last month.

Despite the drop down the leagues, Weston sees it as a blessing in disguise.

And the 33-year-old, who starred in wins over Weston-super-Mare on Saturday and at Dover Athletic on Tuesday, wants to make the loan move permanent, as United push for the Skrill South play-offs.

He said: “I would like to play my latter years working towards something rather than wasting it and Paul Doswell and Sutton have got big plans going forward and we hope to get to the Skrill Premier soon.

“I’m not getting any younger so I’m looking to play as much as I can and feel that Sutton is the best place to do that - there is a big chance of the move becoming permanent at the end of the season.”

Journey-man Weston made his first of three appearances for Arsenal alongside fellow debutant Ashley Cole against Middlesbrough in the 1999/2000 League Cup.

He then moved to Cardiff City in 2000 where he won two promotions, helping the club climb from League Two to the Championship, before leaving in 2006.

And after travelling around clubs in Scotland, Norway and Iceland the centre-back is back in England and hoping to add another promotion to his CV with United before his playing days are over.

Despite his loan departure from Wimbledon just six months after joining them, Weston still has fond feelings towards the club.

He wished his parent club the best for the rest of the season and thanked manager Neil Ardley.

He added: “The lads are great at Wimbledon and they’ve been doing really well.

“I have got a lot of respect for them and especially Neil because he really helped me push this Sutton move to through.”

Entering the twilight of his well-travelled career, Weston is looking to go part-time next season and he already has grand plans moving forward.

Wimbledon Guardian:

Thank you: Rhys Weston has nothing but praise for the set up at AFC Wimbledon

He said: “Close friends of mine run a golf travel business and I am looking to get working with them at the moment.

“I am also looking to get into coaching - I have completed my level two badge and want to do my level three soon.”

But for now Weston is concentrating on the last four months of United’s season as they look to maintain their decent run of form.

The bad weather has meant they have only played three times in 2014 but the Welshman is still happy with his progress so far.

He said: “I have really enjoyed being here and although it’s frustrating to have had so many games cancelled because of the weather, training has been fun and the lads are great.

“We have got to be realistic - the league is Bromley’s to lose and although we will keep going until it becomes mathematically impossible I think the playoffs are best chance of getting promotion.

“It is a realistic goal and if we win our games in hand then we can really consolidate our position in the top five.”

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