South Bank, Middlesbrough born left back Ernie Rhodes began his football career with Grangetown Athletic from where he signed for Sunderland in 1907, without making a first team appearance for The Wearsiders. Rhodes joined Gravesend United in 1912 but after the First World War he joined Southern League Crystal Palace, playing in their inaugural Football League fixture at Merthyr Town in August 1921 and, being ever present in their inaugural League season which saw Palace win the Third Division (South) Championship. He played for Palace through to March 1923, scoring once, a penalty at Sheffield Wednesday in a 3-1 defeat in November 1922, in 94 appearances. He joined non league Sheppey United in 1923.
Rhodes was the younger brother of Ernie “Dusty” Rhodes and the pair played together at Grangetown and Sunderland, Dusty going on to play for Brentford where he was subsequently both manager and trainer and is included in Brentford’s Hall of Fame.