Juventus manager Joe Montemurro 'always there' for Spartans boss Debbi McCulloch with meeting imminent under FIFA coach mentoring programme

Spartans boss Debbi McCulloch is trying to get a date in the diary for get-together with Juventus manager Joe Montemurro, after explaining that her partner in FIFA’s coach mentoring programme is “always there for her”.

The course originally launched in 2018 and aims to increase the opportunities for upcoming female coaches by assigning them a mentor. McCulloch joined the programme last summer as a mentee to Montemurro, with Scotland boss Pedro Martinez Losa also joining the project as a mentor to Sonia Haziraj. The course, running over 18 months, is helping McCulloch, an A license coach in her own right, to acquire new skills and knowledge to further her career.

“He's always there for me”, she told the Edinburgh Evening News, “I can always pick his brains. It's great to have someone of his level and expertise to be able to rely on. Especially when you are a manager, it can be a lonely place. When you have people like him around you who are backing you, supporting you and trying to help, you can only get positives from it.”

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As part of the programme, McCulloch spent three says in Costa Rica last August for a once-in-a-lifetime trip to view the women’s under-20’s World Cup. On the way back, unable to escape the club she loves, she watched the Spartans v Hearts game on a livestream and even gave a team talk to her players from the airport via videolink. Eventually she would nod off at the crack of dawn safe in the knowledge that Spartans picked up three points in a 2-1 victory.

Debbi McCulloch is hoping to arrange meetings in Edinburgh and Turin with Juventus women manager Joe Montemurro. Pictures: Mark Brown / Getty

McCulloch could soon be preparing for another trip, as she hopes to visit Turin to see Montemurro in-person. The Australian and former Arsenal manager is also aiming to fly over to Edinburgh in the near future. However, with both seasons currently underway, it has become hard to get a set date confirmed.

“It's pretty difficult for two club coaches to try and get dates in the diary”, McCulloch explained. “Especially when the only time we have free time is in the international break, but then there are players away. But we will get something in the diary pretty soon.”