London (AFP) – Joe Montemurro who guided Arsenal to the 2019 Women’s Super League title is to step down at the end of the season the Australian coach said on Wednesday.

The 51-year-old has been in charge since 2017 and described the spell as “the highlight of my coaching career.”

Arsenal said Montemurro was leaving “to recharge and dedicate more time to spending with his family (he is married with two children).”

“This has been the hardest professional decision of my life, as I absolutely love this job and this club, the club I have supported all my life,” he said in a statement.

“I’m hugely grateful to the club for their unrelenting support during my time here and in understanding and respecting my decision.”

Montemurro said he hoped he could sign off with them finishing in a Champions League place.

They are presently three points behind third-placed Manchester United with a game in hand and a considerably superior goal difference as the clubs vie to secure Champions League qualification.

“My focus now is helping the team to complete the season strongly and finishing as high as possible in the WSL, leaving the club in good shape for the future.”

Montemurro is to leave officially on May 31 but Arsenal said they will start searching for his successor immediately.

Arsenal chief executive Vinai Venkatesham said Montemurro would be missed but he left the team in a healthy state and a sound platform to build on.

“Joe has made a huge impact during his time with us and we look forward to building on his legacy and taking the club to more success in the future,” said Venkatesham.

“The women’s game is entering an exciting new era and thanks to Joe’s outstanding work, Arsenal is well placed to be as much a force in the future as it has been in the past.”

Original Source
Author: AFP



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