• New Juventus manager Joe Montemurro (Getty Images)Source: Getty Images
Joe Montemurro's intention was to always head to Italy after calling time on his three-and-a-half-year reformation of Arsenal Women.
By
Dave Lewis

13 Jun 2021 - 1:40 PM  UPDATED 13 Jun 2021 - 1:40 PM

But it was the beaches of Positano rather than the street-scape of Turin that the Australian coach had in mind as he planned a sun-soaked sabbatical in his ancestral home.

That was until Juventus Women came calling five days ago.

In Montemurro’s own words: “I was just about to go on a long holiday but the attraction of the approach was too much to ignore.

“They’re a great organisation and it all happened very quickly.

“There had been a few offers (from other clubs and national teams) but I told my manager/agent not to bother me (for a while).

“But this was just too good to refuse.”

Montemurro, 51, was a transformational figure at Arsenal, delivering their first WSL crown in seven years, a Continental Cup and League Cup.

But he hankered for a change to top up his creative tank in the country where he’d spent the bulk of his playing career in the lower divisions.

Being appointed successor to Rita Guarino, who led Juventus Women to a perfect Serie A season in 2020-2021, has infused the former Melbourne City and Victory W-League coach with a new energy.

“It feels like another lease of life, to be honest,” he said. “I’m ecstatic to have taken a role within an organisation of this magnitude.

“I start officially on July 1. The whole aim is to maintain the status and keep building on it.

“Part of the program is preparing for the professionalism in the women’s game coming in 2022-2023.

“That’s a big part of it, as well as helping the team advance in Europe (Women's Champions League). It’s an exciting project.

“When you compare it with Arsenal, maybe there’s more of a whole of club synergy.

“There are cultural differences and the amazing thing about Juventus is that it’s been owned by the same family (the industrialist Agnelli clan) for many years.

“They’ve been part of the fabric of so much success. You feel a sense of what this club means to the city and Italians around the world when you step through the door.”

Montemurro’s possession-based style contrasts with the directness employed by Guarino.

There may be tweaks in that area but he’s not looking to recruit many new faces, believing the existing talent pool speaks for itself.

“One thing I want to instil is a bit more belief in terms of our European aspirations,” he added.

“I don’t think they’ll be many squad changes. We’ll give everyone the opportunity and see who comes up trumps in terms of the way we want to play.

“It’s all about bringing the players to the next level.”