Like any club in the football pyramid, Sheffield Wednesday have had their fair share of disappointing transfer deals but few will have been as financially damaging for the Owls as the 2017 signing of Jordan Rhodes.
The usually-reliable forward made the move to Hillsborough from Middlesbrough in February 2017 in a deal worth £10m, having been deemed surplus to requirements at the Riverside Stadium.
While £10m was definitely far too much in retrospect, there was little to suggest that Rhodes wouldn’t be a success with the Owls, having consistently found the net in the Championship in his career.
The former Scotland international had been prolific in spells with Huddersfield Town and Blackburn Rovers, hitting 84 goals in 169 appearances for the Ewood Park outfit before his move to the North East.
He hit six goals for Boro en route to promotion in the 2015/16 season but was offered few opportunities in the Premier League, so to sign him in the Championship represented something of a coup for the Owls.
However, he would manage just 10 goals in his first 55 appearances for the club and was sent on loan to Norwich City for the 2018/19 campaign.
Despite the Canaries’ promotion, he struggled for goals once again, hitting just six goals in 36 Championship appearances, with Sheffield Wednesday’s £10m investment starting to look more and more like a poor deal for the club.
Rhodes returned to Hillsborough and managed another 10 goals in the next two seasons, hitting seven in the Championship as the Owls were relegated to League One in the 2020/21 season.
This would take his tally to just 20 goals in 112 appearances for Sheffield Wednesday, meaning that chairman Dejphon Chansiri had paid £500k per goal during Rhodes’ time at the club.
The club could have sold him to Norwich City on a permanent deal but Chansiri’s high demands backfired, with clubs unwilling to meet the Owl’s asking price, which was described as “outrageous” by Norwich’s sporting director Stuart Webber.
To add insult to injury, the striker departed on a free transfer following relegation and re-joined Huddersfield Town, where the 32-year-old continues to play a bit part.
Sadly, his career has not been the same since his switch to Sheffield Wednesday, and Chansiri’s decision to sign him for £10m undoubtedly proved to be a disaster.