The Run of Play is a blog about
the wonder and terror of soccer.

We left the window open during a match in October 2007 and a strange wind blew into the room.

Now we walk the forgotten byways of football with a lonely tread, searching for the beautiful, the bewildering, the haunting, and the absurd.

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So We’ve Made a Few Changes…

It’s been a month of milestones here at The Run of Play.  Last Friday, we celebrated our first anniversary.  Today, we’re introducing a new design, with a cleaner layout, new layers of content, and a simpler and more efficient organization.

Why redesign the site now?  In the year since I started The Run of Play, I’ve gotten a clearer idea of how I want it to work and how I tend to work best on it.  The new design will make it easier to apply those lessons (while also, I hope, looking kind of great).

Specifically, this means that you can now look forward to:

More posts. I hope a lot more.  I won’t go into details, but I’ve made some changes to the back end of the site that will allow me to spend less time on things like technical administration and more time calling Roman Calderon a pseudologue.  Fasten your seatbelts.

More substance. In keeping with the above, we’re making the site more responsive to news stories and more alert to the issues of the day.  That doesn’t mean an end to Avram-Grant-as-Michigan-J.-Frog posts or our love of the irrelevant curlicue.  It just means that we’ll also have more to say about things like FIFA scandals, player controversies, match days, club politics, and the media.  It’s all part of the same story, right?

Better integration. I love featuring good writing from other sites, but I’m terrible at compiling link posts.  To make up for this defect, we’re adding a section on the far right of the home page that will be continually updated with links to interesting posts and articles.  I’ll leave out the Tina Brown hair-splitting about whether this constitutes “aggregation” or “curation”.  When I see something I like, I’ll link to it.  It’s not complicated.

You’ll notice some changes to site navigation, but they should be pretty intuitive.  Basic navigation is now in the header instead of the sidebar, and there are more ways to find things to read, from the “active” and “popular” tabs—showing where the latest comments are and which posts have been viewed the most times that day, respectively—to the links to related content that now appear with each post.  When you view individual articles, it will now be now easier to print, email, and bookmark them, and I think the new layout will make them nicer to read as well.

I’ve tried to set all this up in such a way as to minimize the “everything looks strange/nothing is working!” period, but a change as big as this one is bound to create some static.  If you run across any strange behavior, please let me know by emailing In the meantime, I hope you like the new look, and thanks, as always, for reading.

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So We’ve Made a Few Changes…

by Brian Phillips · October 29, 2008

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