Striker Rodney Rowe joined Hull City in January 2001 to bolster the attacking options in Brian Little’s squad, which was seeking to rekindle a winning habit after a run of winter defeats. Signed to play alongside giant centre forward Kevin Francis, the two new players provided the classic big man/little man attacking threat, supplemented by the skilful probing of John Eyre. The first three games with Francis and Rowe in tandem saw City fail to score any goals, which didn’t bode well, but as the club’s financial meltdown grew off the pitch, which led to Adam Pearson purchasing the club, results improved with five consecutive wins in February 2001 that saw the Tigers climb to the fringes of the play-off spots. Rowe scored three goals in those five wins, a first City goal in a 1-0 win over promotion rivals Leyton Orient and further strikes against Shrewsbury and Mansfield. In March and April Rodney scored three more times against Exeter City, Rochdale and Chesterfield, meaning that all six of Rowe’s goals for the Tigers that season came in victories. Rowe’s pace and Francis’ physical presence continued to dominate defences and City edged into the play-off spots at the end of the season, only to miss out 1-2 on aggregate to Leyton Orient.
Rowe stayed with the Tigers for the 2001/02 season as manager Little was able to make new player acquisitions funded by new chairman Adam Pearson. With new striekrs Gary Alexander and Lawrie Dudfield joining the club, Rodney’s opportunities were limited and he mainly appeared as late substitute, coming off the bench to score an equaliser at Rushden & Diamonds in October 2001. Rowe continued to support the first team with occasional starts and substitute appearances before leaving the club in the 2002 close season.
Rodney Carl Rowe was born and raised in Huddersfield and started his career as a youngster in his local club’s youth team. Rowe signed his first professional contract for Huddersfield Town in July 1993 and and made his first team debut three months later against Bristol Rovers, his first goal coming a week later against Cambridge United. He scored three times in his first season in the Terriers’ first team but spent the 1994/95 season on loan at Scarborough (where he scored twice in 18 appearances) and Bury (where he managed only three appearances). Returning to Huddersfield, he spent the next two seasons on the fringes of the first team as the Terriers battled to establish themselves in League Division 1. He left Huddersfield in February 1997 having scored five goals in 46 appearances for the club, half of which were as a substitute.
Rowe joined York City in February 1997 and enjoyed a productive two and half years at Bootham Crescent. He netted three goals in 10 appearances at the end of the 1996/97 season then scored 15 times in the 1997/98 season as the Minstermen finished midway up the League Division 2 table. In October and November 1997 Rodney scored eight goals in nine appearances to cement his reputation as a capable lower league striker. York struggled at the lower end of the table for much of the 1998/99 season and Rowe similarly struggled for goals, but still managed eight strikes as York slipped into the fourth tier. At the start of the 1999/00 season Rowe was seeking a fresh challenge and spent two months on loan at Halifax Town, scoring twice in 10 appearances, before leaving York City in November 1999 – in 30 months at Bootham Crescent Rodney had scored 27 goals in 110 appearances.
Rowe joined League Division 2 challengers Gillingham in November 1999 for a £30,000 fee and contributed four goals as he played a support role in the Gill’s successful promotion push under future City manager Peter Taylor. Elevated to the second tier for the 2000/01 season, Rowe was marginalised by new manager Andy Hessenthaler, who took over from Taylor in the close season, and Rowe left the Priestfield Stadium in January 2001 having made 26 appearances and scored four times for the Gills.
Rowe left the Tigers and began a four year career in the Yorkshire non-league scene before retiring in 2006. He retained a role in the game after his playing days ended, coaching local league teams in the Huddersfield area.
Date/Place of Birth: 30 July 1975, Huddersfield
Hull City First Game: 6 January 2001, Macclesfield Town H (League Division 3), 25 years, 160 days old
Hull City Final Game: 9 March 2002, Scunthorpe United H (League Division 3), 26 years, 222 days old
Huddersfield Town (1993-1997), Scarborough (1994, loan), Bury (1995, loan), York City (1997-1999), Halifax Town (1999, loan), Gillingham (1999-2001), Hull City (2001-2002), Wakefield & Emley (2002), Ashton United (2002-2003), Ossett Town (2003-2005), Farsley Celtic (2005-2006), Bradford Park Avenue (2006)
Hull City Record
Career: 38 apps, 8 goalsRodney Rowe
|2000/01||14 (7)||6||-||-||-||-||-||-||1 (1)||0|
|2001/02||5 (9)||2||-||-||0 (1)||0||-||-||-||-|