The new Jamie Vardy looks biggest threat to Newcastle United
I must admit that I am as guilty as other Newcastle fans in knowing so very little about much of the Championship.
It is only when you drop out of the Premier League that you realise how brainwashed you are, into thinking nothing else really exists outside the top tier.
So for example, Huddersfield Town were a totally unknown entity when they came to St James Park and shocked us in the opening home game before going on to lead the table, although to be fair David Wagner has largely remodelled them since his arrival 11 months ago – including 13 players brought in this summer.
Tomorrow’s visitors Brentford have a surprise package of their own and somebody not many Newcastle fans will know much about.
He has played for Woodley Sports, Halifax, Mossley, Stocksbridge Park Steels, Ashton United, Hyde and Rochdale, as well as Brentford.
Still only 24, Scott Hogan has turned out for a fair few teams and had his share of injuries, but now is looking like he could be a seriously good striker.
For you anoraks out there, you will no doubt have registered Halifax Town and Stocksbridge Park Steels as also two of the clubs Jamie Vardy played for, before going on to conquer the Premier League and play for England.
Not necessarily saying Scott Hogan is going to do the same but his recent form after returning from ankle and knee problems is pretty impressive and something that no doubt Rafa Benitez will be more than aware of.
In his last 14 (12 starts and 2 as a sub) Championship matches (end of last season and beginning of this one), Scott Hogan has scored 13 goals.
In seven of the matches he scored goals and those games finished:
19 April 2016 Brentford 2 Cardiff 1 (Hogan scored two)
30 April 2016 Brentford 3 Fulham 0 (scored two)
7 May 2016 Huddersfield 1 Brentford 5 (scored two)
16 August 2016 Brentford 1 Forest 0 (scored one)
10 September 2016 Brighton 0 Brentford 2 (scored two)
17 September 2016 Brentford 5 Preston 0 (scored three)
27 September 2016 Brentford 4 Reading 1 (scored one)
Every match where Scott Hogan scored, Brentford won. In these seven games it was goals scored 22 and only 3 conceded for Brentford.
The striker’s fitness issues are looking well behind him and this season he has started all 11 of Brentford’s matches and played every minute.
It might be a bit too much to say stop Scott Hogan and you stop Brentford but he certainly looks like a dangerous forward who is on the up.
Ignorance will be no defence if Newcastle United aren’t fully prepared to deal with him.
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