To celebrate the launch of FiveinMidfield, and, of course, Ruel Fox’s birthday, we caught up with ‘Who Framed Ruel Fox?’, the quite superb Tottenham Hotspur blog…
What inspired you to set up WFRF?
Not so much inspired, more provoked. It’s essentially all Juande Ramos’ fault. His absurd last two months in charge made me want to hollow my eye-sockets out with a melon baller. Or at least write a very angry letter to someone. Unfortunately I was in ownership of neither stamp nor proposed eye-removing kit, so started a Tottenham blog instead. Harry Hotspur should probably take a percentage of the blame, too. As it was his stuff I was reading before I’d even worked out how to upload a banner.
How has the site progressed since its launch?
Quite a lot, I suppose. Enough to warrant upping sticks to a glitzy new domain last January. The first eight months of the original launch was a bit of a slog. Over two years ago now. Imagine screaming into an empty room and you’re somewhere close. Thankfully a degree of progress has been made since then. Somehow I got my dastardly mug onto The Guardian website during the World Cup- for which, if you were unlucky enough to catch glimpse of, I can only apologise. WFRF? also linked up with The Sun Sport team amid the warmer months, to test our unerring powers of forecast for the England games. As you can imagine we all did terribly. Most valued, though, is the good bunch of readers I’ve managed to lure in. Posters whom regularly show me up with their unshakable wit and insight. Bloody cheek if you ask me.
What other football blogs out there do you follow?
The internet is basically made up of porn and Spurs blogs. Which is just fine by me. You’ll not go too far wrong with Harry Hotspur- he’s an awfully quick-witted so-and-so. Dear Mr Levy is one of the best out there; funny, versatile, acerbic. Everything you’d want, really. Jimmy G2 and All Action, No Plot are both essential reading (AANP’s written a book for chrissakes!)So, too, Tottenham on My Mind, whose author, Alan, is a preposterously good writer. To sum up, forget WFRF?, these are the places to head…
As a Tottenham fan, how are you enjoying the Champions League? Do you think the team have what it takes to beat Milan in the last sixteen? How far can you go in the competition?
It’s been alright, s’pose. Obviously nothing compared to the great F.A Cup run of 1996 (Hereford, Wolves, Forest, Out) but, you know…good. Seriously, though, it’s been extraordinary. So much so that it’s amazing to think that we ever lived without it. Comparing it to the Europa League now would be like asking whether you’d prefer lobster thermidor for lunch or a fish finger. Which is silly because a) we’re no way guaranteed to be there next year and b) I don’t even like seafood. As far as beating AC Milan and how far we can go in the competition. Yes to both.
Harry Redknapp has said he thinks Spurs can win the league this year. Do you agree?
Harry Redknapp says lots of things. On this occasion, though, while I’d agree with his view that the League is as open as it’s ever been, I think we’re destined to fall just short this time around. Champions League qualification, to excuse the ball-achingly dull cliché, is the priority and anything else is a cheeky bonus. Getting in the top four will be tricky enough. But, that said, stranger things have happened. Pascal Chimbonda once played for France.
Since the David Beckham deal seems to have collapsed, who would you like to see coming in to White Hart Lane?
Beckham, you say? Nope. Doesn’t ring any bells. He must be keeping a low profile. Like most Spurs fan blessed with the gift of eyesight, I’d like to see a new centre-forward rock up at The Lane this January. Just who is another matter entirely. Oooh let’s say Benzema. I’ll probably get lynched for saying this, but I think we should’ve kept Darren Bent. I tell you, if someone was on hand prior to kick-off to tell him which boot to put on which foot, he’d be topping the goal scoring charts in no time. Mark my words.
And finally, can you make a footballing prediction for 2011? It can be absolutely anything you like…
Blackpool will get into Europe, Arsenal fans will vigorously celebrate winning the League Cup but look slightly embarrassed about doing so, Robbie Keane will run out of boyhood clubs to play for and emigrate to Vegas to become a blackjack dealer. And, finally, Tottenham will win something. Year ends in ‘1’ and all that jazz.
A huge thank you to WFRF? for agreeing to speak to us, and we urge you all to check out their fantastic site at http://www.whoframedruelfox.com/wfrf/