Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder’s rotation has been in full effect recently and saw Aston Villa loanee Scott Hogan secure his second successive start against Brentford on Tuesday night, but his substitution at half-time surely ensures once and for all that he has no future at Villa Park.
Well, the 26-year-old may well have been buoyed by the fact that Dean Smith arrived as Steve Bruce’s successor in 2018, given he enjoyed the best form of his career under the former Bees boss at Griffin Park previously, but it didn’t work out positively.
He had only played 90 minutes for the Blades prior to last weekend following his January loan move, but he doubled that total against Rotherham United before starting again for the visit of Brentford to Bramall Lane on Tuesday.
Being named on the team-sheet ahead of players like Billy Sharp and David McGoldrick was probably a tactic by Wilder to ensure that none of his strikers suffer burnout during the run-in, but it went badly for Hogan.
The 26-year-old was largely anonymous in the first half and despite the hosts going down to 10 men when his strike partner Gary Madine was sent off in the 35th minute, he was still pulled at half-time in place of David McGoldrick, who went on to find the net.
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He faces a battle to break back into the starting XI at Sheffield United, let alone at Villa.
The Republic of Ireland international was nowhere near to dislodging Jonathan Kodjia and Tammy Abraham if truth be told, and while the latter could return to Chelsea following the expiry of his own loan spell, it might not make too much difference to Hogan.
It is difficult to see him turning his career with the Midlands outfit given how badly his move has worked out so far, no matter what division they find themselves in next term.