Montemurro eyeing another Continental Cup final as Arsenal Women cruise past London City Lionesses
PUBLISHED: 13:47 23 September 2019 | UPDATED: 13:47 23 September 2019
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Joe Montemurro insists reaching the Continental Cup final again is ‘absolutely’ his aim after Sunday’s 5-0 thrashing of London City Lionesses.
Since taking charge of Arsenal Women in November 2017, the Australian has led them to two Conti Cup finals.
Both were against Manchester City Women, with Arsenal winning the first meeting and City edging the second on penalties last season.
"Getting to the final again is absolutely my aim," he said.
"When we represent Arsenal, we want to compete at every level and I actually really like this tournament.
"With the group stages, you can rotate the squad and keep everyone at a good level which makes for a great competition so I respect it highly."
This was the case at Princes Park as Montemurro shuffled the pack, making six changes from the team that earned a last-gasp win at Manchester United in midweek.
One of these changes saw youngster Melisa Filis start out wide and give an impressive performance which was capped off with an assist.
Ruby Grant, another youngster, came on in the second half with the Arsenal boss singing their praises after the match.
"They're learning and growing well," added Montemurro.
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"The more they understand the way we want to play and more importantly, train at the tempo of the first team players, they'll grow.
"They're young, so with a bit of patience, they'll become very good footballers.
"With the six changes we made, we were still able to play our football and win convincingly which was also good."
Some of Sunday's rotation was forced upon Arsenal, however, as Louise Quinn was replaced by Leah Williamson in the starting XI moments before kick-off.
"She just felt her calf a little bit," said the Australian.
"We didn't want to take any chances with it and ending up making it worse.
"We've got Champions League on Thursday and then a very important league game against Brighton on Sunday so we felt it was important to get her right first."
There was some positive injury news for Arsenal on Sunday as Lia Walti made her return from a nine-month knee injury.
She made her first start since January, playing 45 minutes in which she looked comfortable back on the pitch.
"We're all happy to see Lia back," added Montemurro.
"She's a great asset and an important part of the team. She's missed a lot of football and to start reintegrating here was a good stage to do it."
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