How Libor Kozak is rebuilding his career after Aston Villa release

Aston Villa player Libor Kozak in action during the pre season friendly between Walsall and Aston Villa at Banks' Stadium on July 25, 2015 in Walsall, England.

Giant striker Libor Kozak was a £5million flop at Aston Villa.

Aston Villa player Libor Kozak in action during the pre season friendly between Walsall and Aston Villa at Banks' Stadium on July 25, 2015 in Walsall, England.

Aston Villa's final few years before relegation saw them waste a lot of money on poor signings, ultimately resulting in their slip into the Championship.

They're back in the top flight now, but Villa fans will remember some of their Premier League flops; Aleksandar Tonev, Jores Okore, Nicklas Helenius, Yacouba Sylla... a whole host of disappointing additions.

Another one was striker Libor Kozak, who was signed from Lazio in 2013 for £5million (Guardian) after 22 goals in 80 games for the Rome giants.

 

Kozak himself was a giant, standing at 6ft 4in tall. The hope was that the Czech Republic international would realise his potential with Villa and be a physically imposing target man – but that didn't happen.

Kozak suffered injury blow after injury blow at Villa, managing just 22 appearances and four goals in four years with the club before being released by Steve Bruce in 2017.

Fans may wonder just where Kozak has ended up, and it's been a strange path. He went back to Italy with Bari, scoring just twice in 15 games. It was then on to Livorno, where he failed to score in nine appearances.

Libor Kozak of Aston Villa during the Sky Bet Championship match between Derby County and Aston Villa at the iPro Stadium on August 20, 2016 in Derby, England.

His career was seemingly fizzling out, but the 30-year-old suddenly rebuilt his career out of nowhere earlier this year, heading back to the Czech Republic with Slovan Liberec, where he smashed seven goals in 10 games.

That has seen him earn a big move to Sparta Prague, where he has scored twice in 10 games and can now attempt to push for the Czech title this season.

With four clubs in two years, Kozak has been a nomad since leaving Villa, but he appears to be back on track after his disappointing spell at Villa Park.

Libor Kozak of A.S. Livorno 1915 in action during the Italian Serie B 2018

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