The Spanish boss felt that strengthening Boro’s defence and midfield was the priority in the most recent transfer window, but after completing deals for four new players he turned his attentions to securing the transfer of Rhodes from Blackburn Rovers.
After a complicated process, the 26-year-old eventually completed a move to the Riverside Stadium on deadline day, and Karanka is delighted to have landed the striker.
“When we tried in August and we couldn’t bring (Jordan) here, we started to work on new players,” Karanka told the Teeside Gazette. “At the beginning of January, he wasn’t on the list as I didn’t want to spend that amount of money when I needed different positions.
“(We needed) a midfielder, a defender, and when Diego (Fabbrini) left I needed a No 10. For that reason he wasn’t on the list, but at the end (of the window) when every player I asked for had arrived, we tried again (for Jordan).
“I don’t always want to speak about Steve Gibson as I can’t say any more good things about him. When I wasn’t expecting anything more, he arrived with Jordan Rhodes.
“Sometimes I can understand how jealous other managers are, because on January 30 I had my squad - and then Rhodes arrived.
“So my motivation is to give my chairman, my crowd, and my players back the support and the confidence they show me.”
Rhodes has joined Middlesbrough for a £9 million fee (as reported by BBC Sport), and he is the man that the North East club have identified to score the goals to secure them promotion.
The Scotland international forward has been prolific in the Championship for some time, and he netted 83 goals in 159 games for Blackburn.
Rhodes will be competing with David Nugent and Kike Sola for a place in Karanka’s team, but there is an expectation he will become Boro’s main man.
Rhodes could make his Middlesbrough debut tomorrow, when Karanka’s men take on his former club Blackburn, and they will be looking to consolidate their position in the top of the Championship table.