Barnes scored 13 goals in 94 games for the Rams at the start of his career, and was integral to their promotion campaign in 2006-07.
He never really got the success his talent deserved after spells at Fulham, West Brom and then Doncaster, so in 2012 the midfielder headed over to the MLS, signing with the Texan club.
And it's fair to say since then he hasn't looked back.
Barnes has netted 28 goals in 90 games as he gradually settled in the North American league, including a recent stint as captain, and recently admitting the move was a great decision.
“It makes me so proud. It's kind of understated where I came from a few years ago being injured and looking at things from a different perspective to leading the team out,” he told MLSsoccer.com last week.
“I’ve always believed in my ability, but I had a rough few years with injuries that kind of took it out of me mentally and physically.
“Coming here was the best thing I’ve ever done.”
The Dynamo finished last season in 4th place in the Eastern Conference, and have started the new campaign in similar fashion, finding themselves in 5th position, five points behind top side FC Dallas.
After scoring 11 times last year, Barnes has continued his sensational form this season under former Burnley boss Owen Coyle, netting 6 times in 11 games, including one against the Portland Timbers this weekend.
Bam bam bam ... Love my team what a performance!!!! Thank you everyone for coming out .. Nuff love #ForeverOrange— Giles Barnes (@GilesBarnesReal) May 17, 2015
With form like that, the 26-year-old may yet be able to impress in the Premier League - if he wants to leave Houston of course.