West Bromwich Albion insist they did all their homework on record flop Brown Ideye, but admit the recruitment process was flawed.
At the time Ideye was Albion's most expensive signing in their history when he arrived for £10 million from Dynamo Kiev last summer.
But he departed after just a year last month with the Baggies taking a substantial hit on what they paid for him when he joined Greek club Olympiacos.
Director of football administration Richard Garlick insists the club had detailed reports about the Nigerian striker and watched him in action on several occasions.
Garlick explained that the change of coach, with Alan Irvine replacing Pepe Mel, contributed to the signing process not being as tightly controlled as Albion would have liked.
"He was recommended," Garlick told the Albion Assembly fans group.
"The target list that was put up for that season there were three strikers of which he was one of them which the recruitment department had recommended.
"Unfortunately what happens in football.. at the time it was Alan Irvine who didn't know the player and was reliant upon the recommendations of that recruitment department.
"Recruitment works where the department put recommendations forward, they sift through players, they get to a stage where they can put it into the coaching staff, be it the assistant manager, manager head coach or whoever it is and they get the final say and sign off of it.
"We've never signed a player that the head coach didn't have a say and sign off on. In that case Alan wasn't aware of those players. Unless there are alternatives put forward, you go off the recommendations of it.
"In hindsight they all should have been thoroughly reviewed. But, if you remember, Pepe Mel was on the way out so he wasn't really doing any recruitment work.
"Alan was new coming in and had not had chance to look, so he got presented with it."
Garlick confirmed that Albion studied video footage and scouting reports of Ideye and went to watch him in person.
"It wasn't like he was just plucked out of thin air," he added.
"Those were the recommendations. We had reports on him, he'd been looked at four or five times over a period of time.
"It wasn't like we didn't know the player. There were reports, he'd been seen live.
"But you ideally would want it to be the head coach or the assistant but there was no way that could happen at the time.
"His goalscoring record was good, what you could see on the clips was good, he's actually a really good guy, a good character."