When Rita Guarino signed her last contract extension with Juventus Women around 16 months ago, it came at a time where the entire Bianconere core was doing the same thing. It was one after another, with key piece after key piece committing their future to the project that was started only a few years earlier.
While the contract extensions haven’t been flying left and right (just yet), a few of Juventus Women’s stalwarts have made sure that the 2020-21 season won’t be their last in Turin.
That includes Guarino herself.
The only manager that Juventus Women has known isn’t going anywhere, as the club announced Thursday that Guarino has signed a contract extension through the 2021-22 season. She joins a trio of other key players who have signed contract extensions in the first few weeks of 2021: midfielder Martina Rosucci, striker Cristiana Girelli and defender (and avid dog mom) Cecilia Salvai.
At the time when she signs this latest contract extension, Guarino currently has Juventus Women undefeated in league play, with the Bianconere a perfect 12 for 12 and three points ahead of rivals AC Milan in the Serie A Femminile table. She’s already guided Juve to one trophy this season, as her squad captured the Italian Super Cup — this time played in a four-team tournament style — last month.
Maybe the most impressive coaching job Guarino has done this season didn’t come in a win. The first-leg performance against Lyon — the gold standard of women’s club football — in the Women’s Champions League Round of 32 was one that nobody outside of the club truly expected. While Juve didn’t win the game — they lost 3-2 on a last-minute goal by Lyon — the way that Guarino set up her team to play (and how they did eventually play) against the most talented club team in the world showed just how good of a manager she is.
Now, as the team’s ambitions continue to grow — and the first-leg performance against Lyon is obviously the fuel for a lot of that — they don’t need to worry about any change in philosophy from the person who’s filling out the starting lineup before each game. And knowing just how much progress this team has made in the last couple of years, keeping Guarino around is one of the most important contract extensions of them all.