ruel fox ... off
This article originally appeared in MEHSTG Issue 16 (August 2000)
For many, not even
getting a game in Tottenham Reserves would be a big drawback in their
career. For Ruel Fox, it
didn't seem to matter that much.
His disappearance form
the first team picture (even the new team photo for this season) was
rapid and decisive. He went from number 7 in the squad to nowhere on the chart;
well, number 31, which is almost off the bottom.
It turned out to be number 31 with a bullet.
His appearances for the
Reserves during last season were plodding and he appeared to be going
through the motions and he was obviously on his way out of the club
after George Graham had shut him out of the first eleven.
He did want first team football, but what we have read tells us
that he wanted his cake with it.
for a "loyalty" bonus to leave the club is like holding the
fans to ransom. Our money is what pays the wages (well, about 0.8% of them
probably as TV money now pays the greater part) and why would we want it
to go to someone leaving our team ?
It wasn't even as though Spurs were going to recoup most of the
money they had splashed out on him all those years ago.
When he first joined
Spurs it didn't seem like a bad signing.
Over priced yes, but his trickery against us had won Newcastle
United a couple of games, so he looked as though he could help Tottenham
to a few extra points. It didn't really turn out like that though.
He had one good game against Arsenal in a 2-1 win a month after
he arrived and he lived on that for a long time.
He failed to produce his wing magic that he had shown at Norwich
and St. James' Park and subsequently became a worker down the line, like
so many other anonymous players. He did notch a few goals and his part in the "Vic Reeves
thigh-rubbing" celebration at Coventry raised a few smiles, but
overall he started to feel the rough edge of the fans tongues.
The 1-3 defeat at
Wimbledon at the start of the 1998-99 season saw the fans on his
touchline give him a lot of stick and when he scored Spurs' consolation
goal, he cupped his hand around his ear to the fans.
Not guaranteed to win friends.
From this point his confidence (or what was left of it) seemed to
ebb out of him and he rarely went at full-backs with the intent of
beating them. His crosses
started to come from deeper and deeper, while he wasn't looking to
receive the ball at all.
His departure to West Bromwich Albion will see him play first team football again. The club are in a slump and need to move forward, much like the position Ruel finds himself in. He could have been a very good Premier League player, but he let his skill go to waste and he has had to step down, with his career reaching it's end. A player who could have been somebody is now one who is just some Baggie.
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