Special day for King's Lynn Town midfielder with emotional reunion against Notts County
As cup ties go, they don’t get much bigger when King’s Lynn Town host Notts County at The Walks tomorrow.
But for Linnets midfielder Jordan Richards it will be a special day for so many reasons as he faces an emotional reunion with his former club.
The midfielder made 16 appearances for Notts County after coming through their ranks as a youngster but, more poignantly, it was the club where his late dad Pedro achieved legendary status.
Pedro, remembered fondly in Nottinghamshire circles, made almost 400 appearances for the Magpies between 1974 and 1986, helping them to the top flight of football back in 1980/81 campaign.
His fierce tackling, work rate and consistency saw him become a firm favourite with the Notts County faithful and Jordan is already displaying many of his dad’s traits in a Linnets shirt.
“A few people have mentioned that my tackling and running style is similar to my dad and it’s nice to hear,” admitted Richards, who was handed his first team debut in a Checkatrade Trophy game against Hartlepool back in 2016.
“When I was coming through the ranks, I was always hearing stories about my dad playing.
“I felt more pressure when I was in the youth team at Meadow Lane, especially the first time I played on the pitch in an FA Youth Cup tie.
“I was so nervous stepping out onto the same pitch where my dad made his name but after my first couple of games I took it in my stride.
“Whenever I played for the club, the support I received from the fans was incredible and that came from them remembering my dad.
“A lot has changed since I was last there. It’s a great family club and although I’ve moved on it’s a part of my career that I’ll never forget.”
Richards will put all sentiments to one side as the Linnets look to put a run of three successive National League defeats behind them at the expense of a club steeped in football history.
“On paper, the game does mean a bit more to me after what my dad achieved and having been there as a teenager, but I don’t feel that I have a point to prove,” he said.
“The first year after I left it was still in the back of my mind, but now I’m not fussed. I’m enjoying my football again and it’s another game of football that we want to try to win.”
Linnets boss Ian Culverhouse expects the 23-year-old to take it all in his stride.
“The mileage he is covering at the moment, he has really stepped up to the level and he quietly goes about his business,” said Culverhouse.
“Knowing Jordan, he’s such a laid back character, he will just get on with it. I think he will want to do well for his family but he won’t change his game. He’s been exceptional for us so far this season and long may it continue.”