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Rhodes won't get carried away by Rovers hype
IT would be easy for Jordan Rhodes to feel a little daunted about the challenge he has taken on at Ewood Park. Big pressure for young shoulders to take.
Having seen the Championship transfer record fee smashed and Rovers’ own equalled with his £8million capture, big things are expected of the 22-year-old Scot. Only Andy Cole has ever been signed by Rovers for that much before.
Rhodes himself isn’t thinking about things that way though as, ahead of this afternoon’s trip to Leeds United, he insists he won’t allow himself to get carried away by all the hype.
Last season’s top scorer in English football, firing 40 goals in Huddersfield’s promotion season, is just planning on carrying as normal.
He cut a relaxed figure as he was unveiled to press at Brockhall and was adamant the huge price tag just makes him feel wanted, rather than under real pressure to repeat past prolifics.
He said: “Andy Cole was a tremendous player. I had a couple of sessions under him at Huddersfield under Lee Clark. He put on a couple of finishing sessions and it was good to take a few tips from him.
“I am just looking forward to getting started, to getting settled, used to the area and getting to know the lads. I am looking forward to it.
“I have not really thought about it (the price tag). It hasn’t had a chance to settle in and probably won’t for another six months to a year. I am just going to try to do everything on instinct and go with the flow.
“I just want to try and improve my game and do everything without thinking about things too much. It is a big price tag but it is a fantastic feeling for someone to come out and pay that type of money for you. It shows they want you so much and it is a really good feeling.”
‘Gamble’, ‘astronomical’ and ‘over the odds’ are all phrases used about Rovers capture of the Scottish international, especially with the young hot-shot still relatively untried in the Championship.
He has scored a couple in his first two games in English football’s second tier for Huddersfield already this campaign and insists he is looking forward to the new challenge.
“I have not thought about the step up and coming up from League One,” he said. “I have just tried to make the runs and get where I think the balls will drop and try and apply the finish that might go in the back of the net.
“I have had a couple of chances and maybe could have had a couple more goals, but I am happy with the return of two. Sometimes as striker they do go in and things are great. Sometimes they don’t and strikers live for goals.
“Ultimately you just give 100 per cent for the team and it is the points that count. It is not the goals. If I don’t score on Saturday, we would all take three points whether it be an own goal or anyone else scores.
“I don’t have a target. I will just try to do the best I can in any game I play and just try and give it my all. It is not about goals, it is about trying to get goals and trying to get in the top six and the top two.
“I will just try and make the runs and try to get on the end of it. Hopefully they do go in because that is what I love doing. There is no better feeling.”
So why Blackburn Rovers ? After all, we are talking about one of the most highly rated young strikers in English football.
It has been a reported a host of Premier League clubs were chasing his signature and yet he has joined a club at the same level as Huddersfield.
He said: “Hopefully Blackburn Rovers will be getting back to the status they should be.
“I don’t know who else was interested. You would have to ask Huddersfield Town that. I knew of Blackburn Rovers’ interest and knew how strong they were willing to pursue the transfer.
“They kept coming back for me and it showed how much they wanted me. This is a Premier League club, with Premier League facilities. You only have to come here and look around, see the players you are having lunch with. I see it as the next stage of my development.
“I am not a complete player by any means. I am playing with players who have played at the highest level here and I am coming here to learn from them.
“We have a great chance of going into the next league and that is where everyone wants to play their football."