When Aston Villa signed Scott Hogan for a then Championship record of £15m in January 2017, the club would no doubt have expected the striker to deliver on his money’s worth.
Speaking after his signing, then Villa boss Steve Bruce declared: “He has got that hunger in his belly. He’ll give us something that’s been lacking.”
Sadly for Hogan and the club, he was nothing short of a disaster in his time at Villa Park. In total, he managed just ten goals in 61 games, whilst he spent the previous couple of campaigns on loan at Sheffield United, Stoke and then rivals Birmingham.
After getting into a bit of form for the Blues – he bagged seven goals in 17 games last season – the club decided to make his loan move from Villa into something more permanent.
And if Villa have been watching Hogan’s season thus far, then they will be absolutely laughing all the way to the bank.
The 28-year-old has struggled immensely to rediscover the kind of form that convinced Birmingham to
bring him in last summer, managing a measly two goals in 16 games in all competitions.
That hasn’t been down to him making substitute appearances either, with 14 of those matches actually seeing him start from the off. He’s averaged less than a shot per game this campaign in the Championship, evidence of a striker who is woefully out of form and can’t find himself in the positions to test the goalkeeper.
As per Whoscored, his average match rating this season of 6.31 actually ranks him 20th among all Birmingham City players, with only four players below him. Hogan has been shocking virtually all season, and the man with eight caps for the Republic of Ireland looks nothing like the player that convinced Villa to part big money with to sign.
Johan Lange played an absolute blinder by getting rid of him last summer.