Karanka welcomes Hogan's return

I want the Scotty Hogan who played here at the beginning of the loan – and he knows that. It is a hungry player who has come.

Aitor Karanka

Aitor Karanka says the decision to sign Scott Hogan on a long-term contract is an indication of how much the Club wanted the striker.

Hogan penned a four-year deal yesterday, having spent a successful loan spell at the St. Andrew's Trillion Trophy during the second half of last season's Championship campaign.

“You can imagine how happy I am,” said Karanka.

“Scott is a player who everybody knows. He did really well here last year.

“Once again it shows how well the Club is working. I didn’t have any concerns when Jukey was injured because I knew another (striker) would arrive.

“We had a list and Scott was at the top of the list at that time, we were in no hurry. We didn’t make any mistake because we knew we wanted Scotty and Scotty wanted to come back here."

And Karanka is confident that Blues' new number 9 can reproduce the form that saw him bag seven goals in nine games earlier in his loan.

“I want the Scotty Hogan who played here at the beginning of the loan – and he knows that. It is a hungry player who has come," continued Karanka.

“A four-year contract is a big show of commitment from the Club and I think is the only way to convince a player like Scotty who had a nice contract at Villa and a lot of offers to go (elsewhere).

“If he has shown commitment coming here, we have to show that same commitment. There are also three parties in this scenario and Birmingham City and Scotty wanted to be together.

“He told me he wanted to move and know he wasn’t going back. The last how many years he has had to go along knowing he had to go back again. Now it is permanent which is important for him.”

Hogan's arrival, along with the availability of Lukas Jutkiewicz and Jonathan Leko (who is nearing the end of his recovery from a long-term injury), plus teenage forward Adan George means that Karanka will be able to adjust his side's style of forward play accordingly when needed.

“I will have a lot more options, if we want to play direct to Jukey we can, if we are winning games and need to play transitions Scott is really quick and intelligent, if we want to keep possession we can have both of them in the box," concluded the Blues boss.