Arsene And Arsenal

Arsene Wenger and Arsenal have agreed to a two-year contract extension.  CNN thought he might be out a few months ago.  The put it this way:

Arsene Wenger admits his future should have been resolved sooner, but is “committed” to Arsenal and “forgiving” of his detractors.

Arlene’s extension was controversial.  It also goes against the grain as soccer managers are usually fired regularly.  Arsene was hired on October 1, 1996.  The second most senior manager in the 20-team English Premier League (EPL) started in 2012.  Other European leagues have similar tenures.

It was controversial because Arsenal was thumped by Bayern Munich in the Champion’s League and finished fifth in the EPL. They did end up with the most points ever for a fifth place team and won the FA Cup for the third time in four years.  Arsene has the record for FA Cup wins.

We support the extension because there is only one Bill Belichick.  What would have happened if the Browns kept him as head coach?  Is it really the intersection of Bill, Tom, and Robert?  A more relevant question is what would have happened to the Philadelphia Eagles if they kept Andy Reid as head coach?  Wikipedia tells us:

Reid was previously the head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles, a position he held from 1999 to 2012.[2]From 2001 to 2012, he was also the Eagles’ executive vice president of football operations, effectively making him the team’s general manager. He led the Eagles to five National Football Conference (NFC) championship games, including four consecutive appearances from 20012004, and one Super Bowl appearance in 2004. Reid was fired by Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie following the 2012 season.

Reid was hired by the KC Chiefs shortly after his firing by the Eagles.  In the four seasons that followed the Chiefs have been 43 and 21 and made the playoffs three times with one win while the Eagles are 34 and 30 with one playoff appearance.  Arsene is not Bill but he is a consistent proven winner like Andy.  Arsenal is better off with him then in the job market.  The constant turnover of coaches tells us that players matter and the next coach is rarely perfect either.


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