Fresh & Easy, Tesco's US venture, is barely five months old and already it's been written off. Of course, schadenfreude is the favourite sport of journalists and they're all too willing to go along with the whispering campaigns and hysteria a single-minded blogger and the odd selective leak can create. But it's not just the media pack that's got hold of a scent. This week Tesco's stock was being hit by fresh concerns among the analyst community, with the concerns of a not particularly influential analyst apparently spreading to the main houses. Even the waiters of Barcelona are talking about the failure of Fresh & Easy. At the World Retail Conference this week , a Tesco exec who produced his corporate credit card in a hotel bar was asked by the waiter why Fresh & Easy wasn't working. News travels far as well as fast when you're Tesco. Of course, there's no smoke without fire. But how fickle and near-sighted these people are. Will it fail? Certainly tweaks need to be made, as the company acknowledged this week, with a sparse interior, poor marketing and a failure to adapt the offer according to local demographics among the problems. It may also need to reduce the preponderance of own-label products while its customers get used to the concept. But five months is too early to be writing off Fresh & Easy, or breaking out its P+L for that matter. Tesco is smart enough to learn from its mistakes. It's in the US for the long term. So whether you're a journalist, an analyst or a competitor, I'd wait five years before I wrote these guys off. Five years, not coincidentally, is the term of Sir Terry's bonus. But even that may not be long enough. After all, it took Aldi at least 10 to make a significant impact in the UK and with £1.3bn sales no-one's now saying it hasn't been a success.