Melbourne City FC can confirm it has signed goalkeeper Melissa Hudson as an injury replacement player for shot-stopper Emily Shields.
Hudson (nee Barbieri), 37, joined her new teammates at the City Football Academy on Thursday and is eligible to be included in Patrick Kisnorbo’s match day squad for Friday’s Melbourne Derby at AAMI Park.
One of the country’s most decorated shot-stoppers, Hudson joins Melbourne City FC after making 86 appearances for the Australian women’s national team, the Westfield Matildas.
Hudson captained the Matildas to an historic AFC Women’s Asian Cup win in 2010, played at four World Cups (2003, 2007, 2011 2015) and has been named W-League goalkeeper of the year on two occasions during seven seasons in the national competition.
Commenting on the signing, Head Coach Patrick Kisnorbo said: “We had to consider cover following Emily’s injury and in Melissa we have a player who will add a significant amount of experience and strong leadership qualities to the group.
“Throughout her distinguished international and domestic career, Melissa has been a passionate and driven professional and we are confident she will be an important addition in Emily’s absence.”
Familiar with City’s Matildas quartet of Kyah Simon, Steph Catley, Alanna Kennedy and Lydia Williams during her time in the national team setup, Hudson said she was looking forward to the opportunity with Melbourne City;
“I’m thankful for the opportunity to come in and work in a great environment and contribute to a team that has set a fantastic benchmark for the W-League competition. I’m excited to be involved and I believe I have plenty to offer the Club and this team.”
Shields broke her wrist injury in the warm-up ahead of last Friday’s match against Perth Glory and will be sidelined for an indefinite period. Kisnorbo added;
“We wish Emily all the best as she commences recovery with our medical team.”