This week we’ve been making bagels. The goal is a nice tall bagel, crispy exterior, no burned or scorched spots.

The dough starts with a poolish (pre-ferment). This is a deceptively difficult thing to do. It’s easy in the sense that you mix equal parts (by weight) bread flour and water with a small amount of yeast. You let this rest for a few hours and it helps develop great flavor in the bread. The difficult part is not letting it ferment too much. If you overferment the poolish, you will lose some structure in your final product and that will mean flatter breads.

I think this has been my problem the last two tries. The bagels still turn out pretty good but I want a nice tall round bagel in the end and mine have universally been a bit flat. Still tasty! And that’s the great thing about baking bread at home: most of the time, the bread you make won’t be factory perfect but it will taste good.

After the pre-ferment the dough is straight forward. You just add more flour, more water, salt, and more yeast. There’s one additive in bagel making – diastatic malt – which is malt powder with enzymes. I’ve seen a lot of recipes which don’t call for diastatic malt but instead just use honey or barley malt syrup. The diastatic malt is supposed to help with fermentation, give better rise. This can also be a bit tricky to work with because if you put too much, your bagels can come out “gummy”. I’ve used it before and couldn’t tell any difference in my rise but my bagels have been flat so… I have some diastatic malt so on my next batch, I’ll use it instead of the barley malt syrup.

The other problem I’ve run into with bagel making is shaping. There are two methods for shaping: poke and roll. I think I prefer the roll method but I’ve been struggling to get the dough to stick. This could be because my particular flour is super fresh (I buy from local miller Cairnspring Mills) and can take a little more water than I’ve been giving it. So, my next batch I’m also going to increase my hydration. I’m at 57% hydration right now. 60% would mean an extra 20g of water, which is funny because when I was following another guy’s recipe he just adds salt in to his dough after he lets it autolyse (to activate the diastatic malt enzymes) and I was thinking that you need to get that salt into water to help it get into the dough, and in my notes I have “20g water?”

Baking bagels is also its own process. You have to boil the bagels (in water that has more malt syrup in it, I’ve also seen people add baking soda) for about 30 seconds on each side, then dunk them in toppings and then place them on bagel boards. My bagel boards are actually a bit thin and I’m slightly worried that that’s causing a problem. But I also overbaked my first two batches. Notes on this are all over the place. I’ve seen people bake their bagels at 425 and not use a bagel board and 475 with a bagel board. I’ve also seen 475 for 25-30 minutes total baking time and 475 for 16 minutes total baking time. And of course, the question is how accurate is my oven? I’ve never temped it. You’d think I would have and that I’d have like a laser temp gauge or something but I never have! Mine are turning out slightly burnt on the bottom and I don’t want that.

That’s my bagel adventure so far. I’m going to start a batch this morning, starting with the poolish, and fingers crossed I don’t over ferment it.

Arsenal picked up another injury in midfield yesterday as it was announced that Mo Elneny is out for a few weeks. Arsenal knew that we needed another CDM and didn’t buy one for whatever reason. Now I guess we will need to see if Lokanga can pick up the pieces. I like him a lot but he doesn’t seem to have the midfield awareness needed to play DM and whenever he’s been tried as the lone MFer he’s pretty easily pressed off the ball. Other options there are using Xhaka as DM and Lokonga as the box to box MFer, playing Zinchenko as the lone DM, and trying Ben White. Ben White’s being heavily championed by certain folks and I find it funny. Not that he would be laughable there, rather that we have entered the entirely predictable part of the Arsenal season where fans argue about which players we should be playing out of position to cover for injuries. It would be nice if one year we could just have enough guys to cover. But that’s the beauty of following the Arsenal: the right way, the wrong way, the Arsenal way!



  1. I’ve used diastatic malt in bread. Seems to help with both chewiness and airiness, but I’ve kept it to about a tablespoon.

    Argh, Elneny injury. Partey seems a bit fragile, aside from other issues. Zinchenko feels like a good option, but hard to say how injured he is. Being in a brace not good.
    I’m fine with some combination of Ben White/Xhaka/Lokonga for Villa. But feels like we need a stronger option for United and the other top teams. If Partey and Z aren’t going to be regularly available, we need to prioritize cover there over a winger.

    1. +1

      Deft, Lonestar.

      SLC, Partey needed/needs the same level of competition that Tierney — our other perma-crock — got. Someone as good as or better than. Ideally young, and can be sat some. Yeah, Elneny is cheap. But if you’re depping Partey or Tierney, you’re goingt o get a lot of games.

      Sambi is a difficult one to gauge. Seems like Arteta lost faith in him, and that’s never a good sign. I wonder what the kid made of the drumbeat for Tielemans?

    2. I agree but people seem to have a strong hatred of him for some reason. Put it this way: I like Sambi more than I like 99% of Arsenal supporters.

      1. Ornstein is saying that Elneny injury is no small thing– and that his absence will be for a significant period. Sound like something akin to a muscular/tendon injury. Feel bad for him, a thoroughly nice and likable lad.

        What is Sambi’s superpower? Anyone? I thought that he (and Zinch in a pinch) were the Xhaka understudies.

        btw, loved Eddie in the Amazon doc telling Sambi not to f****** feel sorry for himself not playing much, because he wasn’t the only one. Looks like Sambi will be getting minutes aplenty.

  2. Last season was weird. We started like sh*t, got a few ups and downs, got sh*t again, went on an incredible run and then sh*t ourselves. Now imagine that as your first season in a foreign country, where you played a lot initially, got dropped for a long spell and then had to come back in to save the season.

    This Arsenal side is vastly different to the one that went on that run to end the season. Our play is different, our structure is different and our approach is different. I do agree that Sambi does go walk about a bit and that might be a consequence of his youthfulness, but he is built to be a very good holding midfielder.

    Of all our midfield options, only Partey and Odegaard are above him in receiving on the turn in deep areas, dribbling/feinting a press, and forward passing. He actually has a better long ball than both Partey and Elneny, which could be very useful in stretching play and bringing our wingers into quality overloads much more.

    Defensively he is better than given credit and if Jorginho can play in a two with Kovacic, I don’t see how we should fear having Lokonga supported by Xhaka and Odegaard. Especially since we defend from up front now, and he is actually good in defending within a deep block.

    If you think I am exaggerating about his skillset…

    Sambi as a box-to-box??? We would be wasting his talent. Such talented young player shouldn’t be pigeonholed into a role when we have a gap in the squad for the role that he excels in. He can run and do many things, but he plays that Box-to-box role like a defensive player who has been given license to attack. He only adds an extra body in those areas. More awareness is needed in those higher areas than deeper, so his shortcomings will be further exposed in serious competitive football, as opposed to the fitness building pre-season friendlies.

    He is good enough to not only contribute, but he also needs to grow into the role to develop into a more capable Partey replacement.

    1. Hey Devlin, some good points. One thing though, that video shows Sambi playing excellent box-to-box play.

      1. Its more of a video to show his technical abilities and yes he is in forward areas a lot in that video, but that is only as a consequence of where he starts.

        I will use Aaron Ramsey as an example. The best of Ramsey in an attacking sense and his ability on the ball was more eye catching when he would play as a box-to-box midfielder. He would arrive late in the box untracked, show up in wide areas to create overloads and generally be a nuisance in the attacking third. Why??? because opposition structures do not plan for a carefree midfielder who goes wherever he feels like. It becomes hard to track such a footballer on the pitch.

        But when moved into the role that SHOULD actually occupy the zones he runs into (zone 14), Ramsey looked lost or resorted to being more of a defensive #10. His lack of quick feet and inability to turn in tight spaces, accompanied by his lack of tactical positional sense, he would be lost and only offer pressing out of possession and nothing more in possession.

        For Sambi, starting from deep is what allowed him to get into those forward zones much better and without the same type of attention that a Martin Odegaard or Xhaka currently face. These two guys usually have about two to three players within their immediate zones.

        I like his skills in deep areas, but his touch is too lose and his running with the ball is only suited for big spaces. I watched him in pre-season and he was too safe in the box-to-box role. Those areas need more than just hard running and playing safe passes, just look at Liverpool.

        So yes, that looks like excellent box-to-box play, but he is only in those areas because he burst from deep and made space, or he is in untracked areas of the pitch.

        My aim was just to highlight his turning from deep, dribbling, forward passing (in between the lines), Long passing (he has this flat long ball technique that is really special), intercepting and calmness.

        He can develop very well if given time and space to grow as a sole #6.

        1. Just to add on to your points…

          Moving Sambi to DM also makes sense from a squad building perspective and the current transfer rumours.

          In one of the earlier All or Nothing episodes, there was a screengrab of a squad board in Edu’s office. Odegaard and ESR were both listed there as No. 10s, which we can infer that ESR’s stint at LW is only temporary till he acclimatises to AM.

          If ESR is at AM and Vieira is still an unproven quality on whether he is a RW or AM, then a space opens up as Xhaka’s and Martinelli’s understudy.

          Hence links to Milinkovic-Savic and Tielemans as back up at no.8. And Mudryk as back up at LW/RW

        2. Thanks Devlin, thoughtful and thought provoking as always.

          My first reaction is that yes we should absolutely let him develop and see if you are right about his auspices as a lone 6. Don’t you think that should be in the Europa and cups though? It takes years to master that position and Arsenal are no longer in a purely developmental phase. I mean I’d be fine with him there against Everton for example but not a tactically astute team like Brighton and certainly not against top 6 opposition. In other words I like his promise but I’m well short of thinking he can be a plug and play option for us in that role especially. I also still wonder about his desire and focus without the ball.

          From here it seems like The 6 and with it Arsenal’s ceiling this year comes down to TP and his dodgy thighs. If he’s a short term absence then we can manage. If not, we need to buy. Send good vibes to the Arsenal medical team…

          1. We should really stop babying our players. The boy has played full games against Chelsea, Liverpool and many other EPL games already. People forget that Sambi has already played a full 90 against Brighton.

            To be fair and balanced, we were dominated and deserved to lose, but at the same time, Thomas was there and it didn’t make much of a difference. If I was to ask you if you think we are good enough to win at Brighton with this current side, most would be confident we could.

            And if we can be confident of our team in it’s current guise, why is that faith and confidence not include the fringe players?

            It was the same with Eddie last season. The common thing that I kept hearing was that, is he good enough to lead the line for a team like Arsenal? Thrown in the deep end, he came out of that water doing the backstroke.

            We signed Sambi from RSC Anderlecht, the biggest team in Belgium. He wasn’t a bench warmer or playing in the development side, he was the captain of the team. He was playing week in – week out. He has played in BIG games. Tougher games than anything Europa League could throw at us. He has played in derbies that fill up stadiums and kept his head, a 21 year old captain.

            Maybe using the term “develop” is wrong. We need him to grow into the role at this level because just like Eddie, you can best believe, he is beyond learning anything from Zurich, PSV or Bodo Glimt. He was already passed that stage of development before we signed him. He has an international call up already.

            And also, I dare anyone to bring forward an Arsenal player who has been developed by Europa League games. Mikel was forced into seeing Eddie’s qualities and level, and it would have been painful to lose him just because he was young and not Mapped, Haalaand and etc. Sambi is the same. This is one of the things that I would like to see Mikel develop. In a season where he will have 5 substitutes and Europa League, can he truly utilise a squad and also develop young players? Saliba, Saka and Martinelli were already young standouts when he arrived. Smith Rowe basically forced himself into the squad in the same way as Eddie.

            Let us stop looking at Sambi like he is Azeez. Yes he was frowning and upset when Eddie was telling him that he isn’t the only player not playing, but Eddie was still speaking to a player who had just completed a full season at a top club in Belgium as a captain.

            The boy is a talent and Arteta is going to pull an Ainsley/Granit on him if he doesn’t start rotating him with Partey.

  3. Seems like Villa tomorrow is a great opportunity for Lokonga to show if he can operate as a 6. If he pulls it off, maybe we’re fine with him and Ben White as an emergency option.
    If not, unless we really feel like BW is a very good backup option it would be a risk not trying to get someone else in. It sounded to me like the Elneny injury was non-trivial, Partey is fragile, and it’s unclear to me how long Zinchenko is out. We’re heading into a very busy period, and this has been shown to be a critical role in Arteta’s team.

    1. I don’t know if Sambi has been training with the team as a 6 or not. In preseason we saw him as an 8, alternating with Xhaka. But regardless he almost has to play there. The only other realistic choice is Xhaka but moving him requires upsetting the chemistry he is forming as the 8.

      I would rotate the squad elsewhere too though. Eddie and Tomi deserve starts and Saka deserves a rest. Emile should get a game too.

    2. I don’t think one game is fair on anyone to show what they can do, especially in a side were you barely get minutes on the pitch, be it as a starter or sub.

      The boy had to literally fill in for Partey (up there with the best midfielders in the world) last season after getting 0 minutes game time for a whole 7 games prior, and only 90 minutes in 12 games.

      That’s why we need the boy to get games regularly. That is why we need our bench players to enter the fray more, and much earlier. Cedric, Holding, Elneny, Eddie. These guys had to save our season, with no game time to keep them up to speed. We sold them short and then judged them for it. It was unfair.

      We complained about players being undercooked when the serious games came last season and yet we want these players to prove themselves with only a single game?

      Arteta’s growth this season will be in the team’s sustained performance over a full match, his use of the entire squad (not just dividing the squad into League side and cup side) and his development of young players who are not prodigies.

      It’s one thing to have Saka, Saliba and Martinelli. But players like Sambi, Smith Rowe and Viera are squad builders, and that’s where we will see his development ability.

      1. I don’t disagree Devlin. It’s not really fair to throw Lokonga in today and make a call about whether he’s the right long-term answer for coverage as a 6.
        But regardless, that’s kind of where we are. Transfer window closes tomorrow. And we’ve got more and harder matches ahead. Arteta and Edu need to make a decision right away on the risk.

        1. Yeah definitely not jumping to conclusions on one game. But it was telling that the boss changed his system so that neither Sambi or Xhaka had to shoulder the #6 alone. He only trusts TP and Mo with that. I think that’s what’s behind the Danilo interest.

  4. i agree that arteta needs to utilize the squad more. however, sambi is the 3rd choice cdm for good reason. while there’s a drop off in quality from partey to elneny, the drop is more precipitous from elneny to sambi.

    although the video was cute, the telling indicator is that sambi was almost always on the pitch alongside either partey or elneny. why is that? like with xhaka, i don’t think arteta trusts sambi as a #6. I’m pretty sure that most of that video was with arsenal still operating with the double-pivot. none of that video had sambi operating as a lone cdm, which is what arsenal currently utilize.

    sambi reminds me of his countryman, thomas vermaelen. people instantaneously fell in love with vermaelen because of his talent, but time told a different tale. by the end of his first season, it was clear that he needed gallas along side him to shine. as soon as gallas picked up an injury, or even more significant, when gallas left the club, the holes in vermalene’s game were plain to see…and vermaelen is, in my opinion, the most technically gifted defender arsenal have ever had. the problem with vermaelen was his tactical skill and it’s the same for sambi.

    while i’ve often derided arteta, i completely trust his ability to assess what a good cdm looks like. right now, arsenal don’t have many options. to be a good cdm, you’ve got to be the smartest guy on the pitch. i don’t think anyone’s ever said that about sambi. time will tell that he’s 3rd choice for a reason. in fact, i think i’d rather play xhaka there than sambi. we’ll see.

    1. like doc said, it takes years to become a good cdm. however, if sambi’s going to become a good cdm, arsenal has to play him; but they don’t have to play him as a cdm.

      playing as a #6 is less about talent and more about intelligence. when xhaka was at monchengladbach, he looked physically a lot like xabi alonso; similar stature, speed, power, sweet left foot, and overall talent. however, time told that xabi alonso was a lot smarter than xhaka, which is why he was a significantly better cdm. you can have errors or mistakes as a #8 but as a #6, the mistakes are usually costly. likewise, the bulk of a cdm’s work is done without the ball so a highlight video never tells a story of quality concerning a cdm.

      1. Joshuad, I can not agree with you more. Youtube clip does not say engouh, as long as having watched three continuous lost (Round 31~33) last season, it is understood why Arteta has lost the faith on Sambi to play #6. My opinion is not only tactically he is not reay but also mentally is far away, even for a role in double pivot.

        Arsenal should find a replacement immediately or change the formation to cover the absence of Partey/Elneny.

    2. I see your points Josh, but….

      1. I love Elneny, but what drop off Josh???
      This is weird because our record with Sambi is 10-3-6, while our record with Elneny is 8-0-6. Elneny is more experienced and will add far more discipline, which is learned by the way, but in terms of what they bring to the team, a drop off is an exaggeration man.

      2. We only started playing with a lone #6 THIS season.
      Even though Sambi did have someone close to him in the whole clip, everyone actually did. Xhaka, Partey, Patino, Ainsley, Sambi and Elneny. Nobody actually played the lone #6 for us last season. Why can’t he play the lone pivot if everybody else is getting the chance now?

      3. Sambi isn’t just his technical ability.
      Maybe its because there are no clips of him in Belgium, but it’s unfair to class him as tactically incapable in a role that is literally 4 games old in competitive games for this Arsenal. Sambi is not an Arsenal development player, he has already been playing the role as captain for RSC Anderlecht. He was signed as a defensive midfielder.

      4. Arteta’s gauging of talent at his disposal is still up in the air.
      The whole thing with Saliba where the boy wasn’t good enough for Arsenal, but comes back the following season as the best defender we got, while having made very minimal changes on loan leaves a lot to be desired. Most of the players who thrived he either found already thriving, were stumbled upon, or are obvious talents.

      And what makes you trust in his assessment of a CDM?

      5. Sambi is a 23 year old player who can become good.
      The boy doesn’t have to be the smartest player on the pitch, in fact most young CDMs aren’t the smartest players in their teams. You gain that in-game intelligence by playing. So unless we are going to keep buying players of the calibre of Thomas Partey for the role, then we should start giving these youngsters games to grow into the roles.

      like I said before, the clip was to highlight his technical ability and ability to beat the initial press, turn from deep and his forward passing. Isn’t that also important to how we play now right??

      1. After the players he’s brought in and the system he’s built, I have absolute faith in Arteta’s ability to judge talent and characters that fit his system. It has to be both as well. I wish people would stop hammering on the Saliba thing. Even if he got that wrong, he’s gotten so many more right.

  5. sorry, but i think the cdm has to be the smartest guy on the pitch. that’s clearly a philosophical difference between us and they are always debatable. the cdm has to control the game and that requires experience more than skill. also important is that your teammates have to trust your judgement. it’s why most teams don’t use young guys as their cdm; rodrigo at city is a rare exception as he’s just out of this world-level brilliant.

    when partey was sambi’s age, he was coming off the bench for atletico as a winger. you need those reps but, like i said earlier, they don’t have to be cdm reps. santi was a brilliant cdm…because of experience and tactical nous, not because he’s fast, good in the air, or a great tackler. makalele is widely regarded as the best to ever play the position and, unlike santi, his technique was unremarkable.

    it’s hard to play cdm well without that experience. that’s why there’s a precipitous drop off behind elneny; experience and know how, particularly as so much is done off the ball. i thoroughly enjoyed watching rodri perform against palace on saturday. haaland got the hat trick but rodri was the virtuoso.

    i trust arteta’s cdm judgement because i believe he was a brilliant cdm. he could control a game without even touching the ball. sambi is a long way from that.

    1. one last thing. if memory serves me correctly, arsenal moved away from the double pivot during the second half of last season…and sam i got no repeat cdm.

    2. I think he did really well today. My only problem with Sambi is that he’s slightly loose with his touch. The next team he faces will definitely close down on him more aggressively once they see how he played today. But overall I think he made a lot of very intelligent plays and just one or two moments which I didn’t care for.

      Defintely would want him there rather than Ben White.

      1. I don’t see BW as anything more than an emergency option in there against a ball dominant side. I don’t think he would view himself any different either!

  6. Tim, on bagels… thanks for that walk through. Im not the baker in my house, so the lady is certainly going to give it a shot.

    Question… what is it about the best bagels gives them their unique chewy, stretchy texture?

    And to my Yank friends here, who sells the best bagels near you? In New York in June, I went to Russ & Daughters on Houston Street.

  7. Well we’ve had our Sambi cameo, what do you make of it Devlin, Josh?

    What I saw was that you’re both a little right. Lokonga has an impressive technical array and looks dynamic at times moving the ball between the lines. I also saw that Arteta moved to a double pivot and did not trust him with the lone 6 role. The team played great by all accounts but it was also one of the worst teams in the league at home. One thing about Sambi: I seldom see him sprint or engage in duels. I think that gives me the impression that he’s not really into defending that much.

  8. That might end up as the most one sided 2-1 game I’ve ever seen! And the most gimmicky goal ever from Luiz too. Seal off the GK, aim with whip into the near post. Good skill striking the ball, but it belongs more in a talent show than a football match. From an Arsenal perspective what do you say to your players when you concede that goal? Great job getting back into the game right away.

    My only criticism again is that I wanted to see more subs and earlier.

  9. Another 3 points in the books. Fabulous start to this season. I don’t have the time or energy to do the research but it might be the best 5 game start in this century.

  10. I just read the comments for the first time from the previous post. I really don’t understand how anyone could believe there was not a long term plan when Edu came on board 3 years ago. The only players still with the team that were in the squad which Emery named for the Europa league final (the last game before Edu) are Xhaka, Elneny and Saka and neither Elneny or Saka played any significant minutes during Emery’s tenure. Edu and Arteta basically demolished the squad they inherited and rebuilt in 3 years and look where we are right now. That sort successful turnaround and rebuild does not happen if the decision makers are moving from one crisis to the next with no direction or long term plan. Football is a very competitive business which does not forgive incompetence. I am not suggesting there were no mistakes made along the way. No one can make the sort of overhaul we have gone thru without making a couple of missteps. However, the idea that the success we have seen in 3 years was built by decision makers who were stumbling and bumbling around and somehow just happened to get lucky seems unreasonable to me.

    I agree with Doc and expecting any manager to play the sort of football we are now with the players Arteta inherited is unrealistic. No manager can turn lead into gold. Its can’t be a coincidence that everything changed after we got rid of the players we had in 2019 and spent a lot of money on a new and better squad.

    1. I really don’t understand how anyone could believe that there was a plan three years ago. There has been a plan, I think, in the last 12 months but even that was still sort more loose than what I’d call a real plan. So we are at an impasse. You’re not going to convince me that there was a plan 3 years ago. It’s never going to happen so you might as well stop trying.

  11. Talking about transfer deadline … who do you guys think should come in? I just want to put it out there that I am massively disappointed we didn’t go for Paqueata. I know he is mostly an AM, but something tells me he could have done a job at DM.

  12. The virtues of being a 2 footed attacker, Episode 97.

    Martinelli scored with an instinctive stab in with his left, after being denied Goal of Season for a screamer hit with his right foot, and saved by Emi. Devlin was pretty gung ho on Eddie, but based on recent evidence, Im not sure that Eddie’s scoring that.

    Saw only highlights, so cant say how we did or didnt do, apart from get the 3 points. 5 out of 5 is Arsenal’s best start in yonks, but the early fixture list was as kind this season as it was cruel last season.

    TANPA, agree. Quality midfielder, who clearly wanted to play in the prem. To your first Q, I didnt see Sambi today (so factor in how well or not he played) but we need a controlling mid at Partey’s level who can play now. The guys understudying Partey will get a lot of games. I didnt think that we needed a wide right player, but the vibes Im getting is that Saka needs rest, rotation and competition. And Marq may not be there yet.

    I hope that Arteta learned the lesson from rushing back still-injured players, like he did Partey in the NLD, and doesnt do that against United. Speaking of which, they always raise their game for us irrespective of the shittiness of their current state. If we beat them at Old Trafford, the feeling that something special is brewing will intensify.

    BILL says: “However, the idea that the success we have seen in 3 years….”

    Bro, the only success Arsenal have had in 3 years is an FA Cup with Emery’s players, and a Europa League final by the same manager. We’ve had two 8th places finishes, and a 5th place one in a season with no European football. What success are you talking about?

    1. Yes, they (Man U) raise their game whenever they face us no matter how deep a kind of mess they are in. I somehow feel that here’s an example where the supporters/fans play a big role.

      I believe that the Mancs always get one over us because there’s a superiority (them), inferiority (us) complex going on between us fans. And in the stadium that energy easily transmits to the players.

      The Man U fan gives us this “don’t you dare think you’re better than us. Now get back to 2nd best where you belong” kind of vibe.

      I don’t know if that makes sense at all. But that’s how I feel as a Gooner + Man U hater.

  13. Well that was a bummer. Obviously we were never going to finish 38-0-0 but it always hurts to lose to ManU. Disappointing to concede 3 goals.


    I think it’s a misconception to believe that we were a better footballing team then SAF’s ManU teams in the 2006-2013 time frame. During those years Fergies teams conceded fewer then us every season and finished above us in the table every season. You could argue we played a more eye pleasing brand of attacking football but despite that I think ManU actually outscored us in every one of those seasons. Eye pleasing was not the same as effective and over the long term effective is more important.

  14. Tim from a couple of days ago.

    The reason none of us including me didn’t recognize Edu’s plan at first was the first part of the plan was getting rid of the players whose production didn’t match their wages and who were not part of the long term plan. Just like any remodel or rebuilding project the first part has to be the demolition phase to clear out the squad before you can start the positive. None of us would recognize there was a long term plan for a remodeling job if you go into a home that is in the middle of being gutted but you can’t rebuild that house until you are finishing gutting the old.

    I understand that you probably won’t change your mind. However if Edu/Arteta were just flying by the seat of their pants without a long term vision/business plan and a long term plan for rebuilding the club when they first started then they were incompetent and they would have failed miserably.. I think the progress that we see indicates without any doubt they knew what they were doing. Focusing on a few individual mistakes and ignoring the overall reality of where we have come in 3 years seems like the wrong way to look at our situation.

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