This little piggy went to market. This little piggy stayed at home. This little piggy had roast beef. This little piggy had none. And this little piggy went “wee wee wee” all the way home…..
As Huddersfield Town’s Jordan Rhodes crowned a phenomenal season by netting crucial League One Play-off goals home and away versus MK Dons, then converting one of the plethora of penalties against Sheffield United in the final, there’s no doubt the memories of many British football fans would have shown goldfish-like tendencies in forgetting the role of Brentford FC in his development.
The Bees can rightly claim to be the gateway to greatness for the 22-year-old striker, whose loan spell at Griffin Park in 2009 was cut short due to his fifth metatarsal going “wee wee wee” 51 minutes into a home defeat to Chesterfield. The broken toe ensured Rhodes did indeed have to return all the way home, which was Ipswich Town at the time, but that was after a highly successful and ground-breaking stint at Brentford.
Between joining Andy Scott’s side on 23 January 2009 and suffering the foot injury on 17 March 2009, the now Scottish under-21 international notched seven goals in 14 appearances. Rhodes quickly endeared himself to Bees supporters by scoring on his home debut in a 3-0 victory against Aldershot Town.
He even made sure he broke a few records as well as his toe. Just over a week into his time at Griffin Park, he scored a hat-trick in a 3-1 away win at Shrewsbury Town (as an aside, scorer for the opponents that day was none other than Grant Holt, who many had tipped for England Euro 2012 squad inclusion). Not only was this Rhodes’ first senior hat-trick, but, at the age of 18 years and 360 days, he became the youngest hat-trick scorer in Brentford’s history.
Rhodes successfully recovered from the injury to his fifth little piggy and moved from Portman Road to Huddersfield Town on a four-year contract in the summer of 2009.
Since then, the Oldham-born player’s stock has risen unbelievably. Among the gongs he has scooped are the following (take a deep breath here): golden boot winner for seasons 2009/10, 2010/11, 2011/12; fastest ever headed hat-trick (8 minutes versus Exeter City); hat-tricks in two successive Terriers games in 2011/12; most goals in a League One match (five versus Wycombe in 2012); and highest ever scorer to represent the Scottish under-21s.
By finishing the 2011/12 campaign on 48 goals for club and country, speculation is now rife about whether Rhodes will remain at the Galpharm Stadium for Huddersfield’s assault on the Championship, or whether the lure of the Premier League will prove too strong. There is certainly no shortage of interested parties.
One thing’s for sure though, wherever those ten little piggies of Rhodes end up, the name of Brentford FC deserves more than just a passing mention for providing a key platform on which they could strut their stuff.