There’s a very good striker in Scott Hogan somewhere – it just wasn’t going to happen in the claret and blue.
Scott Hogan, Wednesday, joined EFL Championship side Stoke City on a season-long loan. The 27-year-old Republic of Ireland international departs Aston Villa after 2.5 years of indifferent form following a January ’17 move from Brentford.
Under Dean Smith, Hogan was likely seen as fourth-choice behind Wesley, Jonathan Kodjia and Keinan Davis, with another forward possibly on the way before Deadline Day.
In truth, Hogan’s skill-set is not conducive in a one striker set where both possession isn’t a focal point nor the counter-attack a forte. He’s primarily channel runner with a sweet stroke inside the eighteen yard box. Aston Villa made the deal official midweek after rumors swelled Tuesday evening that an agreement was struck.
Stoke made it official too:
At Stoke, Hogan gets a chance to revitalize some goal-scoring form that made him an elite second division forward for one and a half seasons at Griffin Park. With that, he can ensure a continued spot with Ireland ahead of next summer’s Euro 2020.
The player’s contract runs out the following summer in 2021.
Conversely, it is expected that Keinan Davis will stay with the club this season.
Davis, 21, fits the Wesley-mold at striker as a big-bodied target forward with a little bit of potential. The only way I see him leaving now, is if Villa bring in both another forward and another winger before the transfer window closes on Thursday. Then, it would be difficult to keep Wes, Kodjia, new forward, and Davis happy over the course of a full season.
It’s possible the forward Villa are targeting is Sevilla’s Wissam Ben Yedder. We’ll all find out on Thursday evening.