Strictly star Joanne Clifton hatches plan to replace 'godfather' Len


Strictly Come Dancing star Joanne Clifton has revealed her secret plans to take over from head judge Len Goodman.

Joanne, who is partnering sports presenter Ore Oduba in this year's competition, has her eye on Len's seat when he retires from the show in December.

The couple rehearsing (Peter Byrne/PA Wire/Press Association Images)

"I think I should replace him," she told the Press Association.

"We'll win the glitterball this year, I'll replace Len, and sit there and judge my brother. That would be amazing."

The dancer admitted she enjoyed the idea of critiquing older brother Kevin Clifton, who is also part of the show's professional line-up.

But because Len has been part of "the furniture of the show" since its inception it will be "almost impossible to replace him", she said.

Ore and Joanne (Peter Byrne/PA Wire/Press Association Images)

"He's the dad - he's the godfather, Len," Joanne, 32, explained.

Speaking during rehearsal before the second show this Saturday, Ore revealed he is keen to impress Len - but his real ambition is to make judge Bruno Tonioli throw himself around with enthusiasm.

The 29-year-old said: "I would love to get Bruno up on that desk. If Bruno starts jumping up on his seat and starts gesticulating towards us, then I think we've done something right. That would be a dream."

The couple received 27 points from the judges for their first dance after being highly praised for their tango to Geronimo.

Ore Oduba and Joanne Clifton (Guy Levy/BBC/PA)

However, head judge Len critiqued them for taking too long to get dancing.

Joanne said she was happy to "take that on board and this week we will start straight away".

Ore has been so devoted to his dance training that he has become oblivious even to the sun setting, according to reports from his wife.

"What Portia told me is, she came home and he was in the dark just dancing around in the living room," Joanne revealed.

"He'd been concentrating for two hours since he'd got home and the light had faded, but he hadn't even bothered to turn the light on. He just kept on going."

Ore and Joanne Strictly 2016

"This is my life and my world now," Ore said. "All I do is dance."

Practice is paying off - as Joanne has revealed her celebrity partner has winning potential.

"Our aim is really is not to say, 'Oh we're definitely going to make the final'," she said.

"But we would like to make the final. I think we've got the ability to make the final. I'm aiming for the final."

"We will see that as it goes," Ore added. "But Jo is a world champion, so she knows all about competitions and how to win stuff.

"I am just hanging on the coattails - and the ride is amazing."

Strictly Come Dancing airs on BBC One at 6.20pm on October 1.