Jordan Rhodes is not on a revenge mission ahead of Middlesbrough reunion
Jordan Rhodes is desperate to get the better of Middlesbrough - but insists he is not on a revenge mission against his old club.
The on-loan Norwich City striker is poised to lead the line against the promotion hopefuls when the Canaries return to Championship action this weekend.
Rhodes was part of the Boro squad who reached the Premier League in 2016 after edging out Brighton on a dramatic final day, but had limited chance to impress on Teesside during a 24-game spell where he notched six goals.
“I’ve got a lot of fond memories,” he said. “I made many a great friend, some are still there, and it was special to be part of a squad who got out of the Championship, plus a brief time in the Premier League. It was good while it lasted.
“The fans and the people of Teesside were very welcoming. It will be nice to see a few familiar faces. Hopefully we get the better result.
“They have started really well and have a team full of good players.
“It will be up to us on the day to work as hard as we can.
“I am just enjoying being part of things here. It is great being part of a really talented bunch of lads but fantastic off the pitch as well with the camaraderie and team spirit. With a bit of luck we can kick on now with the games coming thick and fast.
“On a personal note, I am enjoying every minute. Norfolk is a lovely area and the family are settled.”
Rhodes is backing the home fans to play their part against Tony Pulis’ visitors.
“One thing that always struck me as an away player at Carrow Road was the number of yellow shirts. It is quite striking how many turn up in the colours,” he said. “I don’t think I ever picked up as a result as an opposition player.
“Norwich teams in the past were tough to beat and scored lots of goals. We just need to give the fans something to cheer about.”
Rhodes was speaking on Thursday at the launch of a club tie up with Loganair to become the club’s official airline partner.
“We are in a fortunate position that with the longer away games we can now fly and that is spoiling us a little bit,” he said. “The lads certainly appreciate it. We are very lucky to have this facility at our disposal.
“When you compare a short flight with a long coach journey, it does makes things a lot easier in terms of preparation.”
Loganair’s three year partnership is a key commercial relationship for the Scottish-based company.
“This is a very important strategic arrangement for us,” said commercial director Kay Ryan, “Norwich Airport is our only operational base outside Scotland. It shows our continued and growing commitment to the city and the airport.
“Like us, Norwich City has a passion to be the best they can be, and I know we’ll both go from strength to strength over the next three years. I’m confident this partnership will be to the mutual benefit of our two organisations.”
Canaries’ commercial director Ben Kensall, speaking to the club’s official site, added: “This partnership is a really significant step forward commercially as it benefits both the first team requirements and boosts the commercial revenue streams further.
“There are very few clubs outside of the Premier League that have an airline partner so we are really pleased to have a long term agreement signed with the brilliant team at Logan Air.”