What on earth happened to the midfield titan that once was Rodolph Austin?
Football is littered with stories of fallen giants, those players who were once behemoths of the game turned into sad and pathetic excuses not fit to wear the shirt. A harsh assessment, but when your favourite player unexpectedly takes a dip worthy of a theme park ride, you feel somewhat betrayed.
Rudolph Austin was one such disappointment.
The Jamaican midfield leviathan with an intent to do two things: play good football and crush any player within a ten-yard radius. He was the footballing equivalent of the Russian T-14 Armata – a man made of steel who loved to tackle, shoot and pass.
After some delightful appearances in the month of August, which included a goal in a game against Oxford, Austin cruised away with the Player of the Month award. It was all going so well.
Whatever the midfielder was dieting on before (a suspected diet of diesel and rocket fuel) it had run out, and in Scooby-Doo-esque style, the real Austin was revealed.
Long gone were the days when he could pick out passes from across the pitch and complete them with pinpoint precision. Even the ability to connect small, basic passes we all taught as budding footballers at the age of one seemed to escape him.
The howitzer shots he used to rain down on the opposition’s goal turned into feeble pea rollers, the kind you fire at your baby nephew at a family barbeque; and let’s not even talk about what happened to his tackling ability. We are sure you all want to sleep tonight.
Austin was eventually released by Leeds in July 2015 and by September he had returned to where it all began, Scandinavia. Danish giants Brondby IF were the first to secure his services, and though it looked like a small element of his ability had returned – i.e. simply being able to kick a ball again – his stint at the club only last two years before moving to Esbjerg FB. And this is where he remains.
The Danish Superliga doesn’t quite compare to Premier League play-offs, does it?
Leeds fans, what are your standout memories of Rudolph Austin? Let us know in the comments below!
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