Football

The next hotshot of British football – Jordan Rhodes

On Friday night a struggling Wycombe Wanderers side entertained a promotion chasing Huddersfield Town, in a League One game which was televised live.

21 year-old Jordan Rhodes scored his fifth hat-trick of the season but he didn’t stop at three. He scored five as Huddersfield won 6-0. Five goals in 50 minutes to be precise. The fact that this game was televised has made the media stand up and take notice of this young talent.

West Ham aren’t too happy about it as they were favourites to sign him. Now there’s an abundance of Premiership teams interested, although if you believe rumours, Fergie sent Paul Scholes as a scout to Huddersfield back in October to see what all the fuss was about.

This season his stats read, an insane, 27 goals in 22 games domestically, with his overall Huddersfield record being 60 goals in 103 games. He is a record breaker. During his first season at Huddersfield, aged 19, he scored a hat-trick of headers in eight minutes. This feat beat the previous best for an all-headed hat-trick which was set by Everton legend Dixie Dean, renowned for his aerial prowess, more than 70 years ago.

In October he became the first Huddersfield player to score consecutive hat-tricks since the 1920s, scoring trebles against Exeter City and Preston North End. In December he scored all of Huddersfield’s goals in a 4-4 draw against Sheffield Wednesday.

His father Andy Rhodes was a professional footballer at Oldham Athletic when Jordan was born in 1990. His father’s career took him north of the border where he played for eight years resulting in Rhodes junior spending his childhood and early school years in Scotland.  When the family moved back to England, Rhodes snr was a coach at Ipswich Town. Jordan completed his schooling in Ipswich and was signed by Ipswich Town in 2005 as a 15 year-old. He played for the under 16s, under 18s and reserves in his first season, netting 40 goals. He was called up to the England under 17 squad but pulled out due to injury.

Whilst at Ipswich, Rhodes was also loaned out to Oxford United, Rochdale and Brentford. His exploits at the latter two clubs (9 goals in 19 games) resulted in an undisclosed fee transfer to Huddersfield.

Internationally, he qualified to represent Scotland as he attended school there for five years. Since selection he has been prolific at Scotland Under 21 level with 6 goals in 6 games culminating in his first cap for the senior national team in a 2-1 win away to Cyprus last November.

When I watched him play in the televised game, the way he took his goals reminded me of Alan Shearer. A robust, prolific unit who will always get there and is a nightmare for centre backs to play against.

Whilst Huddersfield are chasing promotion to the Championship they face a dilemma as to whether they cash in on their crown jewel in the January transfer window or wait until the summer, when they hopefully make to the Championship. With his exploits this season, Rhodes will not be a cheap acquisition. Would he cut it in the Premiership? Given his impressive track record, I believe so. It is only a matter of time before everyone starts talking about Jordan Rhodes.

Categories: Football

3 replies »

  1. I wouldn’t get too excited about this kid. How many players have come from the lower leagues to a big premiership club, only to fall by the wayside and sink into an endless abyss of despair and suffering. Jermaine Beckford is a prime example of a player who was highly rated in the lower leagues as he stuck it in the onion bag with regularity for Leeds. But as soon as he moved to Everton… well… he done jack s*&£ really. Unfortunately the days when a top club can buy a player from a lower league club and turn him into a star are now nothing but memories of years gone by. Back in the 70’s and 80’s, players would be bought from the lower leagues into top clubs and would do well e.g. Ian Rush. That’s because the gap between the old division 1 and 2 in terms of quality wasn’t much. But now the gap between the premiership and the championship is huge. There’s been so many strikers that have scored 20-30 goals in the championship but as soon as they get into the prem they struggle. So as I said already… don’t get your hopes up about Jordan Rhodes because he’ll probably end up as just another good lower league player that couldn’t make it at the highest level… just like Theodore Walcott!!!!

  2. What can you say…..the boy knows where to get a good black pudding supper and it isn’t down south 😉 A great talent who will no doubt go far. That’s both Rhodes and Melo 😀

  3. Awesome article and great to hear about young talent coming through, especially when he’s English…oh wait, he’s playing for Scotland!?!?!

    Keep up the good work Melo 🙂

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