After two weeks of international friendlies, the Fiorentina women return to the field tomorrow against Tavagnacco. The women have been very busy lately. With recent Serie A games against Florentia and AC Roma, followed by the second leg of the Champions League against Arsenal, an international friendly break was much deserved.
The international break was just that for many, though Alia Guagni and Francesca Durante put in valuable time with the Italian Women’s team.
Before the break the women experienced a 2-0 loss to Arsenal. Though a loss is always disappointing, this result was a vast improvement over the 4-0 loss to Arsenal in Firenze a mere 2 weeks before. Fiorentina coach Antonio Cincotta said this, “First of all, we knew before it was going to be almost impossible to keep up with Arsenal. The team is so strong physically, the players are amazing.” Cincotta continued, “But I’m happy because two weeks ago it was 4-0 in our stadium. Today we came here, in Arsenal’s stadium, and we tried to show our winning mentality. We tried to high press as much as we could. We tried to play 3-4-3. It was a stupid idea two hours ago but now we show it is not.”
A very honest and complimentary Cincotta was very proud of his team. The women had many bright spots during the game, with many players and formations showing significant growth. In the end though, the gap between Italy and the rest of Europe was still just that, a gap. “You have to know that my club Fiorentina, four years ago started this change of mentality. [We were] The first professional club in Italy that decided to invest money in a women’s club. Now with our new management Rocco Commisso and Joe Barone, who come from the US where the women’s movement is so huge, we want to keep growing under them. Juventus wants to grow, Roma, Inter, AC Milan all want to grow. We were the first and we want to be the future.”
Antonio speaks of the future of soccer in many respects. Fiorentina has many women who represent the future both in Italy and on other international teams. Antonio has a new perspective in building a team under the new Rocco Commisso regime. “The new owners are making us feel important. Thanks to the stunning new training ground project, we will have the chance to coexist with the men’s team and youth academy. It will strengthen our identity. From the perspective of the women’s team it will give us the chance to develop and be part of a shared environment, which will be beneficial for our future and objectives.”
Tomorrow we return to Serie A competition against 8th place Tavagnacco at 9:00am EST. Among the women and their coach optimism is high, as is respect for their opponents. While it may seem like an easy game, we implore you to tune in, watch and support our team. Alia, Ilaria, Alice, Lisa, Tatiana, Francesca, Antonio and the rest of the team will surely appreciate it!