With the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup™ fast approaching, we take a look at our star players who are set to feature on the world’s biggest stage. First up, it’s experienced shot-stopper Lydia Williams.
When Westfield Matildas Head Coach Ante Milicic named his squad for the upcoming FIFA Women’s World Cup, City goalkeeper Lydia Williams earned her fourth call up to the major tournament – a remarkable achievement.
The 31-year-old has fought off her fair share of setbacks, both on and off the pitch, to continue leading the way as one of the world’s best goalkeepers.
Growing up in Kalgoorlie to parents Ron, an Indigenous elder, and Diana, an American, Williams chased a Sherrin, barefoot on the dusty red desert plains of Western Australia. It wasn’t until she eventually moved to Canberra as an 11-year-old that she joined her first competitive soccer club before joining the ACT Academy of Sport program.
Since her first ever game, where she saved a penalty, there was no turning back for Australia’s number 1.
Fighting off serious injuries, including two knee reconstructions, Williams has amassed 77 international caps to go alongside a long list of accolades. The three-time W-League Goalkeeper of the Year has won two Westfield W-League premierships and three W-League Championships, currently holding the record for the most clean sheets in league history (41).
Her 2018/19 Westfield W-League season was no different from the high standards Williams has set herself over recent years, surpassing the 100-game milestone, she went on to make a number of crucial saves throughout the season.
For the Matildas, Williams has played a vital role on the international stage since making her debut at the age of 17. The shot-stopper has been a member of Australia’s squad for their 2019 Cup of Nations, 2017 Tournament of Nations and 2010 AFC Women’s Asian Cup trophy wins.
Heading into her fourth World Cup, Williams’ wealth of experience is set to prove invaluable to a relatively young squad. Her performance at the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup will give the team great confidence. Starting in four matches, Williams registered two clean sheets in Australia’s memorable run to the Quarter Finals.
If there’s anything that we’ve learned from her time at City, it’s that she thrives under the pressure of the big occasion and will be ready to stand tall for her nation when called upon.
Good-luck Lyds, we can’t wait for you to do both our Club and our country proud!