Joe Montemurro to leave Arsenal Women role at end of season

Arsenal Women's manager Joe Montemurro

Arsenal Women's manager Joe Montemurro issues instructions from the touchline - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

Joe Montemurro will leave his role as Arsenal Women's manager at the end of the season the club have confirmed on Wednesday afternoon.

During his time at Arsenal Montemurro won the Women's Super League title in 2018-19 the clubs first title in seven years he also took the Gunners to four cup finals winning the Continental Cup in the process and made last seasons Champions League quarter-final. 

The Australian has decided to take a professional break to recharge and dedicate more time to spending with his family.

Speaking to he said: "My three-and-a-half years at Arsenal have been a fantastic adventure, the highlight of my coaching career

 "I have had the opportunity to work with and learn from some of the best in the industry on and off the pitch.

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“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.

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

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“I’ve had a fantastic time here at Arsenal and I am proud of what we have achieved. I must thank all the fans, players, staff and the club.

"This club has always been a leader in women’s football and I will be cheering us on to the next level as I watch as a passionate and enduring fan.

“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.”

Arsenal's chief executive Vinai Venkatesham, said: “We are all disappointed that Joe has decided to leave at the end of the season, but we fully understand his reasons.

“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.

“He is somebody I have the upmost respect for, he has been a fantastic leader for our football club both on the pitch and also off the pitch and in his time with us he has brought us a huge amount of success and plenty of silverware, most notably the WSL title in 2019."

“While winning that silverware, we played the attacking and attractive blend of football that we love to see. So it is a sad day, and Joe is - as he's said a number of times - an Arsenal fan, and he really is an Arsenal man. So there's a great sense of disappointment that Joe has made this decision that he would like to leave at the end of the season and take a break."

“But I must say I fully understand and respect his decision because as well as being an Arsenal man, Joe really is a family man and we had a very emotional meeting where he talked me through the reasons why he is going to step away from his dream job and make the most difficult decision that he said he's made in his professional career, and that's to press pause, take a break and spend some time with his family. Of course we wish Joe and his family the very best and of course Joe will always be part of the Arsenal family and he leaves with our very best wishes."

“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.”

In terms of what happens next, first and foremost Joe is our head coach until the end of the season and there is plenty of work to do."

“The absolute focus is to finish as high in the table as we possibly can, and of course fighting for a Champions League spot is the focus. 

Of course, the players and staff are going to be upset and disappointed by this news, of course they are, and there will be an element of shock as well - we all know that. But there is an opportunity for us all to rally around, galvanise and finish the season really strongly."

“At the same time we are going to start the process for Joe's replacement, and we are going to start that process immediately.

"We're going to be looking for someone to build on the illustrious history that Arsenal Women have, build on the legacy that Joe is going to leave, and also leads us into a new era for women's football. "

"An era where the popularity of the game has never been higher and the competitiveness of the game has never been higher, both here and internationally."

Montemurro will leave the club on May 31 as Arsenal start the search for his successor immediately. 

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