Aston Villa‘s signing of Scott Hogan in 2017 proved to be a huge disaster, as the Villans made a significant loss on the striker after his record-breaking arrival.
The Republic of Ireland international first established himself with Rochdale in League Two, hitting 17 goals en route to promotion in the 2013/14 season.
He would then join Brentford in the Championship and was a huge success with the Bees, hitting 21 goals in just 36 appearances despite suffering a significant cruciate ligament rupture which ruled him out for nearly two years.
It was perhaps a gamble for Villa to bring him to the club for a then Championship record fee of £15m in February 2017 but it was a lack of consistent form and goals rather than injuries that made his time at the club so disappointing.
In 61 appearances for the club, Hogan would manage to find the net just ten times in all competitions, before being sent out on loan to the likes of Sheffield United, Stoke City and finally Birmingham City, meaning that, even before wages are taken into consideration, the frontman would cost Villa £1.5m per goal.
His time at the club wasn’t helped by then-manager Steve Bruce either, who the striker clearly didn’t see eye to eye with. In a 2018 interview, he said: ‘The most difficult thing in football is not playing when you’re fit. The second most difficult is playing in a system where there is just no way on this earth it’s suited to you, you are hung out to dry a little bit.”
After hitting seven goals in 17 Championship appearances on loan at the club’s city rivals, Birmingham, his move was made permanent in the summer of 2020, with the undisclosed fee paid unlikely to have been anywhere near the money Villa paid for the Irish forward.
Frustratingly for Villa, Hogan is now excelling in the second tier once again with their fiercest rivals, with seven goals to his name already this term.
The 30-year-old, who has 11 caps for the Republic of Ireland to his name, already looks well on his way to eclipsing the ten strikes he managed in the Championship throughout 2021/22, having scored just seven in the second tier during his time at Villa Park.
Sadly for Hogan, he will join a long list of expensive recent transfers that have failed to work out with the Villans, and the club will surely regret spending £15m on him during their time in the Championship, as his form since suggests that he was never worth that sort of fee.