Sport Can Scott Hogan be Villa's goalscoring solution?

16:30  07 january  2018
16:30  07 january  2018 Source:   Read Sport

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Scott Hogan signed for Villa in January 2017 for around £9.5 million and has struggled to hit the goalscoring hight’s that he hit during his time at Brentford, since swapping Griffin Park for Villa Park.

Hogan scored 21 league goals in 33 appearances for Brentford and his scintillating form had Premier League suitors West Ham sniffing around, but since he made his move to Villa he hasn’t come close to a return of that level.

The striker has had a rough start to life at Villa, suffering from a malleolar injury in February that kept him out until the middle of July as well as picking up a few other knocks. To add insult to those injuries when Hogan has been fit and playing he hasn’t fit into the system that Bruce has deployed in his Villa team.

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Hogan could be the answer to Villa’s striker problems this season if he was used correctly. He showed at Brentford that if he is given good service he will score.

Instead of lumping the ball up long Villa could play it along the ground and play the ball to Hogan’s feet or in behind the defence for him to run onto. Villa have shown they can play effectively this way with Hogan in the side in their 5-0 new years day destruction of Bristol City.

Steve Bruce believes that the reasons for Hogan’s goalscoring woes are due to the expectations of playing for a bigger club.

“I think it’s hard, no disrespect to Brentford, or Barnsley, but this is different to those clubs where there’s no real expectation, staying in the division is probably the expectation, with that they can flourish but when you come to Aston Villa you are under the pump, under the cosh, under the spotlight straight away.”

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Aston Villa and Republic of Ireland' s Scott Hogan had endured a difficult goalscoring drought up until yesterday. After a record-breaking transfer that could see the fee rise to £15million, Hogan has only landed two goals for Steve Bruce' s side.

a close up of Steve Bruce: Nathan Stirk/Getty Images Sport © Nathan Stirk/Getty Images Sport Nathan Stirk/Getty Images Sport

Even if Hogan’s frustrating start to life at Villa is due to the pressures of playing for a bigger club, he hasn’t been helped by youngster Keinan Davis’ explosion into the first-team squad. Davis’ performances have kept Hogan out of the team which will be frustrating, to say the least.

With the January transfer window now open Hogan may well be considering his future as he goes in search of regular first-team football elsewhere.

If Hogan where to leave a potential replacement for Villa could be Lewis Grabban who has recently been recalled from his loan at Sunderland where he scored 12 goals.

Money is tight at Villa after a busy summer of spending so a loan move could be an option, however, Bournemouth may look to sell him permanently to raise funds for further deals.

Aston Villa v Middlesbrough - Sky Bet Championship © Nathan Stirk/Getty Images Sport Aston Villa v Middlesbrough - Sky Bet Championship

Hogan tells Bruce to end striker search .
Villa striker Scott Hogan who has struggled to find the net this season has scored two goals in as many games and is trying to make the striker position his own. With a long term injury to last seasons top goalscorer Jonathan Kodjia and continuous injuries to Gabby Agbonlahor Villa have been down to bare bones up top this season. Youngster Keinan Davis stepped up and showed his first team qualities but Hogan most recently been getting a much needed run of games up top. Hogan has been in fantastic form of late and does not want to give up his striker position. Villa have been linked with making moves for many strikers this January including Oliver McBurnie, Lewis Grabban and Argentine Leonardo Ulloa but Hogan has told Villa Boss Steve Bruce to stop his striker search and look no further than the ex-Brentford man. Hogan said “I will tell the manger ‘don’t bother’ signing a striker. If you want to go and get someone, go on. But he isn’t going to play because i will keep my place. Im not giving it up now” He also added “I know what i am good at. I have done it all my career. I have scored goals wherever i have been and the stats back it up. People say what they want and are well within their rights to. I have never played for a big, big club before. this is my first time. I have not helped myself sometimes in the way I have performed’. Hogan is showing commitment and desire to fight for his place and to get back to his goalscoring best. He is showing a great mentality as he hasn’t had the best of starts to life at Villa Park but is starting to turn it around and showing his worth. Bruce will have a really tough decision on his as Hogan has been playing brilliantly and bringing in another striker would seem pointless if Hogan can keep up his good form.


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