Monday, July 4, 2022

Joe Montemurro reacts to 4-0 victory over Bristol City

Arsenal were comfortable 4-0 winners away at Bristol City on Sunday afternoon with a brace from Vivianne Miedema and goals for Danielle van de Donk and Beth Mead. Joe Montemurro spoke to the press after the game. The first three questions are from Arseblog News and the others are from other journalists.

On Danielle van de Donk having license to get further forward in recent games…
We’ve been working a lot on opposite areas so we get Kim to come ball side and Jill starting a bit higher and that allows DvD to run in from the other side. It just opens up one side for us to build and what that does is it cuts two midfielders out with one pass. Jill starts higher up, DvD rotates underneath and we get into those areas, so it is deliberate. Especially against teams that play like this and we have to pull them out of central areas and it’s worked quite well.

On keeping five consecutive clean sheets…
We’re retaining the ball better and managing transition moments a lot better too. We’re understanding that when we lose the ball in transition that, even though we can win it back straightaway sometimes but sometimes there might be a delay to allow players to get back and take up defensive positions. We’ve found a very good balance.

On playing Leonie Maier as an inverted left-back…
It was a bit of both (wanting to rest Katie and play a right footer at left-back) they’re all going away with their national team and we expect them all to play 90 minutes and Katie was one we flagged who had played a lot of football and we wanted to err on the side of caution. We did also want to play a left footer on the right side so we could overload central areas so we could pull out their left-back and their left-sided midfielder. That allowed our wingers to lower so we could create space behind.

It was a bit tactical but there was some management knowing the players will be going away with their national teams, I did the same with Lia and Caitlin, we just pulled them out at half time because we knew they were going away, we expect them to play 90 minutes with their national teams too. So were just strategic about that.

On an emotional week after the announcement that Joe would step down at the end of the season…
It was nice to get a summery game where we controlled the match and played some good football, the second goal especially the build up and the movement was special. I don’t want to be too egotistical but it was nice to see the fruits of our labour. It’s been an emotional and difficult week but it’s been quite positive in terms of where we’re heading and the future.

On Brighton beating Manchester United…
We have to play Brighton yet. There is a lot of football to play and i think it’s going to go right down to the wire. We’re getting the rewards for the football we’re playing and the positivity we’re showing and that pleases me the most.

On the team hitting the post four times…
It got in the way a bit! I’d be more worried if we weren’t creating the chances. Today we had some fantastic build up play and some excellent movement and positioning and that pleased me. You’ll always have these games where you miss chances but you get it back in other games if you keep playing like that.

On Teyah Goldie being on the bench and the abundance of defenders coming through the academy…
It’s more about who’s ready than whether they are attackers, defenders or midfielders and who we think is ready to step up. We’re synonymous with a type of payer that we need and I think it’s a coincidence that they have been mainly defenders so far. Teyah is one who has really impressed me and I wish her all the best going forward because she is working with us a lot more and she will improve a lot before the end of the season.

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Viv The 🐐

I must say after yesterdays no-performance, this was, what is called in some german regions, a “Reparaturseidl”. So an alcoholic drink after a hard night to feel better. To repair yourself. It was a good game, they put us under a certain pressing and we did not concede all to many chances (unlike last week). I felt better about the midfield. Though Nobbs out wide is till a bit strange. Though I still like the quality she brings to the side. Shout out to Lia and Lotte who looked very composed in many situations. Lotte really looked a different player… Read more »

Christopher Humphrey

Good to see a sense of unity back in the squad and the likes of Leonie given some game time.

Peter Story Teller

Yes it was but we have generally had united spirit when we are comfortably in control of games. It would have been an ideal opportunity to give young Teyah Goldie a run out for 20 or 30 minutes but for some reason we chose to take off a Dutch international and bring on an ROI international who apparently we were resting for the forthcoming international games. If Teyah is not ready to play in WSL why was she even on the bench? Developing the youth by giving them 1st team chances is one area where Joe could have been better… Read more »

Tim Stillman

There’s really no rush with Teyah, she’s 16. Training with the first team and spending match days with them, observing their preparation and routine is great experience for her. As for bringing Katie on, this just lines up with new thinking in periodisation that total rest, especially at the back end of the season, isn’t always good for players, it’s best to give them 20-30 minutes to keep their bodies ticking over. As a case in point, Bukayo Saka has been struggling with his hamstring ever since he was given 90 minutes off v Leicester.


I think it was also good to give katie a run-out in her favoured attacking position.

Shame about Leonie- her Arsenal career was so blighted by injuries that you think about what it could have been.

Interesting to see DvD and Miedema play with noticeably more joy and freedom than in recent matches.


I agree to your playing youth more point, but not because Teyah, but because Malin, Fran and Anna. I would like to see those players given more time against lesser opposition. Leonie is going in the summer, so instead of her, we should be giving Anna as much opportunities as possible. Fran has wasted a year of her career. If she couldn’t get any minutes here, she should have been gone on loan. (Birgminham has been perfect for Ruby). And Malin is curious. I felt yesterday that she was better and more assured at the beginning of the season, just… Read more »

Peter Story Teller

Totally! Malin is our future Lia in midfield (although Lia seems to have taken to centre back extremely well!) and apart from that drive at goal she seemed a bit tentative. Seems to me she needs some minutes on the pitch to give her confidence. As for Fran, yes she has effectively spent a whole season training (for what?) and it has made me smile to see our subs bench of 5 players contain 2 goalkeepers. When has a team ever needed 3 goalkeepers at a single match? Personally, people get too hung up on age. If you are good… Read more »

Viv The 🐐

I think youth development is a curious thing, cause all of us do not know how it really happens, and it is a process of years. In this game, there could have surely been a chance for one of them. But for a 16 year old, to have the experience of going into a game, the sorrounding and everything is surely something helpful. And I think we miss the thing about beeing frown into the deep end at such a pivitol age. How you cope with that as a character can make or break everything after. But the risk of… Read more »

Tim Stillman

Exactly this. If she comes on and makes an error leading to a goal you might lose the player. Development is an incremental road.


The following Aussies started senior football at a young age Kerr, Carpenter , Fowler , Van Egmond , Foord etc etc
Joe doesnt have the ability tand confidence to recognise future talent and play them unlike his fellow aussie coaches, he has become very English in his football philosophy

Viv The 🐐

It’s not only that. I think about like becoming famous too soon, or achieving your goals soon and easily and maybe falling into a pattern of I don’t have to do much more to achieve. Sounds very strange. But I don’t think everyone reacts in a positive manner to this. I don’t just mean it in this case but in footballing general. Ability wise, most 17 year olds would be “good enough to play”, but I think there are much more circumstances around it, that influence the decision, perception and timing. And I think it is a thing very hard… Read more »




It has been a strange season for Fran – one of the best young goalkeepers in the country and I don’t think she has played any matches (correct me if I’m wrong). Both Manu and Lydia have given us moments of anxiety, so would like to see Fran given some match minutes. Would it really be too much of a risk to give one or two of the fringe players an opportunity in the FA cup match against Portsmouth/Gillingham?

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