Dom Howson column: All Rhodes may be blocked to Sheffield Wednesday

Jordan Rhodes
Jordan Rhodes
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It is the longest running transfer saga of recent times.

I can’t remember the last transfer window which went by where Wednesday weren’t linked with a move for striker Jordan Rhodes.

Wherever Rhodes has gone in his career, he has virtually guaranteed goals.

If every Championship club could afford him, I bet they all would like to have Rhodes on their ranks. Rhodes is a natural goal-scorer and a class act at this level.

Wednesdayites still vividly recall Rhodes hitting four goals for Huddersfield Town in an eight-goal thriller at Hillsborough nearly five years ago. His movement and finishing was absolutely lethal in that Yorkshire derby.

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Rhodes is a player who has been on Wednesday’s radar for some time and there will always be that link due to his father, Andy, working at the club. When Middlesbrough have not been in action, Rhodes has been spotted in the directors’ box this season.

Despite helping Boro to promotion last season, Rhodes has struggled to command a first-team place so far this campaign. Middlesbrough chief Aitor Karanka has indicated he would be prepared to sell the 26-year-old in January should a club meet their valuation of the player.

Karanka said: “Jordan is a player in this squad but if he wants to leave, if we receive the right offer from a club that wants to buy him, and we are happy with the deal, then fine.”

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I understand Wednesday, along with Aston Villa, are big admirers of Rhodes but Boro reportedly forked out £9million to capture him from Blackburn Rovers earlier this year and want to recoup most of the money they spent on him.

Villa, aided by parachute payments, are the clear favourites in the race to sign Rhodes on a permanent basis as they can stump up the cash Boro want and meet Rhodes’ salary demands.

From all the noises I’m hearing behind-the-scenes at S6, any deal for Rhodes would have to be a loan, with a view to a full-time switch. And if Boro were willing to let him leave on a short-term basis, which is not their preferred option, then the Premier League club may have to pay a significant chunk of his wages to make the transfer happen.

The Owls currently fall within the Financial Fair Play (FFP) guidelines but signing Rhodes could potentially affect that.

“There are some clubs who maybe will be with problems now with FFP, maybe, or in the end of the season but we are not [in this situation], we are trying to do things in the proper way,” said head coach Carlos Carvalhal.

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