Arsenal head coach Joe Montemurro is expecting this season’s Women’s Super League to be the toughest ever.
Arsenal finished third in the WSL last season falling short of champions Chelsea and runners-up Manchester City.
Both rivals have recruited big names this year with Chelsea adding Sam Kerr to their side in January, while City will be bolstered by England internationals Lucy Bronze and Alex Greenwood for the coming campaign.
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Montemurro believes his squad is in good shape ahead of the new season but he admits it is getting increasingly hard in the title race.
“Absolutely, we take nothing for granted,” he said. “There are some very, very good players that have joined some good clubs but this works hand in hand with the growth of the clubs themselves, the importance their women’s teams have as part of the holistic growth of an organisation and the brand.
“I think that’s working hand in hand so obviously the players are better, the teams are better, also better staff, better coaches.
“I think the growth (of the WSL) is looking very, very healthy from here on but it is going to be a difficult season.
“I’m pretty clear with the direction and what I want to recruit for what we need. I’ve probably been pretty lucky that most of the players we’ve been able to target within the means that we’ve got have come on board.
“Obviously when you see the big names that are coming, and are probably going to come over the next week, you think OK they are obviously an organisation that can work within those means and you have to accept it.
“It’s probably two-fold, yes the excitement of bringing in big players but it’s also something I don’t think much about because I am so clear about the type of player I need at the club.”
It is over six months since Arsenal last played in the WSL although they were only recently knocked out of the Women’s Champions League quarter-finals by Paris Saint-Germain.
Arsenal begin their domestic campaign against Reading on Sunday and Montemurro cannot wait to get going again.
“It’s undoubted that’s its becoming probably the best league in the world with the attraction of both players and the commercial value of the league so definitely a league where you want to be the best you can be,” he added.
“We try to make a statement every time we step out on the field as Arsenal.
“We try to play our style of football, we try to make sure we represent the club in the best way possible and give our fans the joy they deserve and football the standard it deserves.
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