West Brom scout Rochdale star again

Last Updated: Thu, 20 Feb 2014 11:16
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West Brom are back on the trail of Rochdale forward Scott Hogan after his brilliant return to form this month.

Albion's chief scout was in attendance at Spotland on Tuesday as the £1million-rated Hogan drew a blank in a 1-1 League Two draw against Burton Albion.

The highly-rated 21-year-old had scored four goals in his previous two starts, including a hat-trick against Wimbledon and a solo effort against Morecambe - to bring the Premier League and Championship scouts back to Rochdale.

Dale boss Keith Hill is delighted at Hogan's return to form after the striker had managed only one goal in his previous seven appearances amid unsettling transfer speculation in January.

Hill believes the rumours of interest from West Brom, Sunderland, Sheffield Wednesday and Peterborough had an adverse effect on the 14-goal frontman's form.

So infuriated was the Rochdale boss, he refused to speak to the media following Saturday's 2-1 victory against Morecambe and barred his players from conducting interviews.

"His form did take a dip in January and he didn't handle the pressure of a lot of people talking about him well," Hill's assistant Chris Beech told The Times.

"But it is his first season as a professional and you go through a lot of emotions at that stage of your career.

"Those who haven't played professionally will think it is great that you are being talked about all the time, but it is difficult when the focus is on you.

"I've seen it thousands of times, but Scott has dealt with it now and he has a spring back in his step," he added.

"His goal showed what he is capable of. It was a great piece of individual skill."

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