Nelson born inside forward Jimmy Hogan played junior football for St Mary’s Church, Burnley in 1899, and Burnley Belvedere in 1900 before spending the latter part of 1901-02 on the books of Second Division Burnley as an amateur, without making a first team appearance. He then had spells at Nelson in 1902 and Rochdale Town in 1903 before re-joining Burnley in September 1903, making his Football League debut at Bristol City that November. He soon established himself in the team scoring 12 goals in 52 appearances, before re-joining Nelson in the summer of 1905, moving to Southern League Fulham in October 1905.
At Fulham he won the Southern League Championship in 1905-06 and was still at the club when they attained League status in 1907, playing the final 5 matches of his spell at Craven Cottage in their inaugural League season, the last of which was the 1908 FA Cup semi final which Fulham lost to Newcastle United. He joined Swindon Town in the summer of 1908 but struggled to get into their team and soon returned to Lancashire to join Bolton Wanderers at the end of October. He played for Bolton for 4 years either side of his first spell in management, as player manager of FC Dordrecht in Holland in 1910-11, and scored 19 goals in 58 appearances for The Trotters playing his last match for them in September 1912.
Hogan had a lengthy career as a manager on the European continent, coaching in Austria, Hungary, France, Switzerland and Germany. Hogan is considered one of the great pioneers of the game on the continent, and his effect and ideas are certainly partially responsible for the development of football in mainland Europe. His first foray into English management came with Fulham, when he was appointed in August 1934, but he only lasted in the job until February 1935 after which Hogan returned to Austria, where he had previously had considerable success and he coached their national team to the 1936 Olympic Final.
Aston Villa then appointed Hogan as their manager in November 1936. This was following the embarrassment of the club’s first ever relegation the previous season. Within two seasons, Hogan had guided Villa back to the top flight winning the Second Division Championship in 1937-38. He left Aston Villa with the advent of the Second World War in September 1939. After the War he joined Brentford as coach in September 1948. Hogan also had a short spell in the early 1950s as a coach at Celtic.
He is sometimes credited with the revolution in European football that saw Hungary thrash England 6-3 at Wembley in 1953, ushering in a new football era. After the match, Sándor Barcs, then President of the Hungarian Football Federation, said to the press, “Jimmy Hogan taught us everything we know about football.” Gusztáv Sebes, the Hungarian footballer and coach, said of Hogan, “We played football as Jimmy Hogan taught us. When our football history is told, his name should be written in gold letters”.