‘We Understand What It Is To Be Arsenal’: Joe Montemurro

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Arsenal Women manager Joe Montemurro addressed the fans at Thursday night’s Supporters’ Club Q & A and insisted his side’s return to Champions League football represented just the beginning of their ambitions for the competition. Arsenal have endured a five-year absence from the competition they won in 2007.

Nigel Mitchell began by asking Joe about his side’s WSL title triumph and how it was achieved

JM: “First of all I hope you can understand my Australian accent. No cricket jokes, please! The word I would use is honesty, we have that accountability in the squad and it’s important we all understand what it is to be Arsenal. What it means to wear that shirt every day in training, coming into Colney and seeing that big logo. Tonight is very special, I got to meet my idol Liam Brady tonight, so it’s a special night for me.”

Nigel asks Joe about the ten Arsenal players at this summer’s Women’s World Cup

JM: “They should be honoured to represent their country and we encourage that at Arsenal. In women’s football we don’t get many opportunities to showcase how amazing the game is and how tactically developed it is. That really showed in France and we’re just starting to talk now about football not women’s football. It’s just football.”

A question about the four new signings this summer

JM: “We did the work on those very, very early. We were very clear on what we needed. We’ve got the added pressure and expectation of being champions now and we’ll play in the Champions League. But we don’t just want to be in it, we want to win it. So we were strategic about who we bought.

“But there was succession planning too, so these are not short-term signings. We signed three players from Bayern Munich, first Manuela Zinsberger, who comes in with an amazing amount of experience. She’s 23, so she can underpin the succession planning in goal.

“We signed Jen Beattie from Manchester City and we needed a centre-back and one who can carry the ball out and play from the back in the way we want. I worked with Jen at Melbourne, she’s an Arsenal girl too. Jill Roord is 21, Dutch midfielder, who has that long-term view too. We then signed Leonie Maier who is a right-back. We’re looking pretty solid.”

On playing at the Emirates on Sunday

JM: “It’s one club here, we didn’t ask for it, the club came to us and said ‘we want you to be part of this’ and we feel very part of the family here at Arsenal. What’s really interesting is that we’ve been trailblazers here, now everyone is copying us and playing in their men’s stadiums.”

On playing at Tottenham’s new stadium in November

JM: “It’ll be nice to get a tour of the stadium and we’ll take the three points too, so all good.”

On playing at Boreham Wood and the redevelopments at Meadow Park

JM: “We really love it, we’ve made it home. What we really like there is the engagement with the fans. The players always stay behind afterwards to sign autographs and that’s important to us. We love it at Boreham Wood.”

On next season

JM: “We want more success, but we want it playing our way and in our style.”

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iGooner
iGooner

Go ladies you lot are my sunshine!!! Thank you Blogs for covering the ladies I’m very much invested in them now.

SheffieldGooner
SheffieldGooner

Good to see regular news on the ladies.

In other news… Kola, what a fucking hero. Those scum must have been thick to pick a fight with him.

Rocastle Rock
Rocastle Rock

Kola is football’s Khabib…or is Khabib UFC’s Kola?!

Deo
Deo

I read that in an Aussie accent.

PolyEmery
PolyEmery

The whole article? Must’ve been fun!

Rocastle Rock
Rocastle Rock

I live in Melbourne. Joe’s Aussie – Italian drawl is authentic. Good bloke, too. Did fantastically well here in the W – League before getting “the call”

Peter Story Teller
Peter Story Teller

Out loud or in your head?

Chidi
Chidi

Good to know we’ve been proactive with the Arsenal women. I hope they play at the emirates a tad more, especially the champions league games. Upbeat for the new season. Thanks Tim

Chuqu
Chuqu

“We want more success, but we want it playing our way and in our style.”
I’m sure Arsene must have said this in the past word for word.
Our ladies gave me joy last season, I hope thay have a better season this time by winning the CL.

kaius
kaius

Good luck to the team in the CL this year, bring home the Big Cup!

With Arsenal Women signing so many Dutch players, it’s a shame the men’s side has moved away from Dutch talent since Bergkamp and Marc Overmars were such a big part of our history.

trugun
trugun

Joined the Arsenal Women’s FC club two years ago and it’s the best thing I’ve ever done.
So fed up watching the men’s team repeat their losing strategy year in year out. Over the years I had watched a lot of games played by Arsenal Ladies (as they were called back in the day) and became really impressed with their give it all attitude. It would do the men good to watch their games and see what they have to do to become winners, and it wouldn’t hurt Unai Emery to get some Time in with Joe Montemurro, as it stands the only trophies in the cabinet are likely to be from the women’s game.

Chris Humphrey
Chris Humphrey

White Hart Lane ’71, Wembley ’79, Anfield ’89 , the Invincibles so many memories. Dan Carter’s Wembley winner 2016 re-invigorated my interest in football and the last 3 years supporting Arsenal Women has been wonderful. Skills, commitment, leadership really looking forward to the new season.