In the weeks following Italy’s surprising run at the 2019 Women’s World Cup, the Juventus Women management team made sure that the Bianconere’s best players wouldn’t be going anywhere. Contract extension after contract extension was agreed to, with just about every player you can think of that has been with Juve’s women’s team over the previous 12 months — at the very minimum — agreeing to stay with the team that has won Serie A Femminile for two years running.
Now, there’s been another contract extension handed out.
But it’s not to a player. Rather, the person who fills out the lineup sheet every weekend.
In about as little of a surprise as there’s been since Juventus’ women’s team was created, manager Ria Guarino and the club have agreed to a one-year contract extension through the 2020-21 campaign, Juventus Women announced on Thursday. Guarino, the only manager that Juventus Women has ever known, has been with the club since it started a women’s team in the summer of 2017.
Since then, Guarino has not just led Juventus Women to the top of the league in its first-ever season of competition, but also won the domestic double last season, with Juve winning both the Serie A Femminile title as well as the Coppa Italia.
Two years. Three trophies. Already a spot in the Women’s Champions League.
That’s a pretty good résumé when it comes to deserving another year tacked onto your current contract.
Bianconere coach until 2️⃣0️⃣2️⃣1️⃣! @ritaguari has renewed her contract! https://t.co/TTFnOfd8hc— Juventus FC Women (@JuventusFCWomen) October 10, 2019
E' rinnovo fino al 2️⃣0️⃣2️⃣1️⃣ per il nostro coach @ritaguari https://t.co/NnSsYdW5aG #Guarino2021 #JuventusWomen pic.twitter.com/v3msWwNzLI
Regarding the contract extension, Guarino said the following:
“For me it is a privilege and an honor to sit on this bench. An even greater satisfaction because this is a team that was born three years ago and I have put so much of my time, together with Stefano Braghin, to build it. To see it grow is a reason to be proud.”
As Juventus’ website pointed out, Guarino has managed 63 competitive games with the club. She has won 50 of them, a sign of just how fast the club’s progression has been in the first two seasons. (As well as the talent that they have been able to acquire in quick fashion.)
Juventus Women, which was ousted from the Women’s Champions League by one of last season’s two finalists in Barcelona earlier this month, will face as competitive a title defense as they have this season. Roma is stronger. Milan is stronger. Inter’s women’s side has joined the Serie A Femminile scene. Fiorentina, the team that finished second to Juve in both the league and in the Coppa Italia last season, is always going to be a tough out.
But, because of the work she’s done in the past, Guarino has been rewarded with another clear sign that she’s the person to help lead Juventus Women along the current path the club is on — both this season and beyond.