New head coach Alessandro Spugna is eager to get working on his new challenge at Roma Women, as the Coppa Italia-winning side begin preparations for the new season.
After his arrival at the Giallorosse was announced in June, Spugna has settled in at the club and is ready to put his plans in place heading into the 2021-22 campaign.
The former Empoli boss has been left impressed by his experience so far in the Italian capital.
“My first impression has been fantastic. Very positive,” Spugna said.
“From the moment I arrived, everyone has welcomed me really warmly. I immediately felt at home and that's very important.
“I want to thank AS Roma for this opportunity they're giving me. You first thing you realise is that this is a top club, a club that wants to grow and help grow the women's game.
"When I got the call from Roma, I couldn't believe it at first because I wasn't expecting it. Then I quickly realised that I would be taking charge of a big club so I put my emotions to one side and started focusing on the targets we'll set ourselves.”
Spugna will work under Betty Bavagnoli; the club’s first head coach, and first trophy winner, who has now assumed the role of Head of Women’s Football.
“Having Betty Bavagnoli alongside me will make such a difference,” Spugna added.
“She'll be key. I've always considered her to be a great coach and having her as a management figure in support will be massive. She's vastly experienced and there's a lot of mutual respect. It will help me become an even better coach. I'm delighted to be able to work with her.”
With a number of arrivals and departures this summer, Spugna will have a revamped squad to work with.
He will also be keeping a close eye on the Primavera side for emerging talent, after they won the national title for a second year in succession.
“We have an excellent squad that has improved a lot in the last three years,” the new coach said.
“There will be some new players joining, a few of whom worked with me before. I think our main target is to get the old and the new players to gel together as quickly as possible. I believe the club has done a superb job with signings.”
He added: “They've gone out and looked for players who will fit in well with Roma's plans.
“Roma have always had lots of promising young players. We need to keep a close eye on the youngsters, and especially the Italian youngsters. The Primavera have won the league the last two seasons so there's no shortage of talented youth here.
“We'll have to give them time and opportunities but we must look after them because they represent the future of the Italian game.”
In terms of how he wants his side to play, Spugna is eager to implement an ambitious, attacking style.
“We're lucky to have so many good players here and we have to make the most of that,” he said.
“First of all, I want to get to know the players properly. I'm not a coach with very rigid tactical ideas. I like to think this team can play in many different ways.
“We have great players and they give us lots of options. We'll see. I like to play attacking football with a team that can dominate the game.
“I want us to be bold no matter where we're playing and play to win. The league gives us 22 opportunities to show that we're the best. We must be bold every time we step out there and try to win every match.
“Roma won the Coppa Italia at the end of last season and I think it was just reward for the efforts of the last three years. I think and hope that victory will instil the belief in every player that they can enjoy similar success in future, in the league for example, maybe qualifying for the Champions League.
“We have the Coppa Italia to defend and the Super Cup to play. There are several targets we can aim for and perhaps achieve.
“One thing I can promise is that the team will strive to improve on a daily basis.”