Keeping mum: Truth behind Jordan's genes

JORDAN Rhodes today revealed that he gets his football genes from his mother as well as his father.The 18-year-old Ipswich Town striker will be in the Blues squad for this afternoon's Coca-Cola Championship game at Scunthorpe.

Elvin King

JORDAN Rhodes today revealed that he gets his football genes from his mother as well as his father.

The 18-year-old Ipswich Town striker will be in the Blues squad for this afternoon's Coca-Cola Championship game at Scunthorpe.

His father Andy is the goalkeeping coach for Ipswich having enjoyed a long and distinguished career between the posts.


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They are likely to be sitting on the bench together at Glanford Park with Jordan admitting that dad had him keeping goal in the back garden from an early age. But the youngster showed little interest in wearing gloves and since the age of eight he has been finding the net at regular intervals.

“I get my outfield instincts from my mother Linda's side of the family,” said Rhodes junior.

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“My uncle is Steve Agnew, who played in midfield for a number of top clubs.”

Agnew began his career as an apprentice with Barnsley in 1983 before moving on to Blackburn, Leicester and Sunderland.

He also had a short loan period at Portsmouth and ended his career at York City in 2001.

Jordan says that having a dad and uncle as professionals gave him a greater desire to make the grade.

“I used to go to cup finals with my dad and football has always been in my blood. He would perhaps have liked me to be a keeper, but there are no problems as my younger brother Lewis plays in goal.

“His experience has been a great help to me, but away from the game dad never dwells on how I am playing.”

Rhodes is prepared to be patient - using the early handling of Wayne Rooney as a reason not to rush.

He added: “Yes, of course I am anxious to play in the first team. And particularly at the moment with so much to play for and the play-offs on the horizon.

“But the manager and his assistants know best, and what happened to Wayne Rooney is OK by me.

“David Moyes kept Wayne out of the side when he was a 16- and 17-year-old scoring goals for fun.

“He paced the player, and you can see for yourself how well this policy has paid off.

“To get into the side too soon can lead to ruin, and this is something I am more than happy to guard against.”

Rhodes, who is still mates with his former class mates at Kesgrave High School, sees other players from his year making a big impression at Portman Road.

“Tommy Smith is currently on loan at Stevenage and he is coming on so well,” added Rhodes.

“Ed Upson is getting bags of games in the reserves and doing well while I am grateful for the passing ability of Jai Reason, and Kurt Robinson has all the makings of an accomplished full-back.”

While his mates are playing local football and hitting the Ipswich night life, Rhodes is dedicating himself to football.

“There is no going out for 48 hours before a game,” he said.

But with his natural prowess, Rhodes looks certain to add to his two substitute appearances - with his patience proving to be a virtue.

Today's likely squads

Scunthorpe United: Murphy; Hobbs, Crosby, Butler, Baraclough; Cork, Goodwin, McCann, Morris; Paterson, Horsfield; Lillis, Sparrow, Hayes, Weston, May, Horlock, Hunt.

Ipswich Town: Bywater; Wright, Bruce, De Vos, Sito; Haynes, Sumulikoski, Garvan, Quinn; Lee, Counago; Colgan, Harding, Miller, Rhodes, Trotter, Williams, Casement, Roberts.

Referee: Mr I Williamson (Berkshire).

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