The fears were grounded not only in the sensational goalkeeping stocks at the Women's Super League giants, but also in Williams' unlucky career history.

Despite being a sensational goalkeeper whose achievements at W-League and international level leave most other global keepers in the dust, Williams played a large portion of her club career as a reserve keeper in the NWSL.


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But Matildas fans, long weary of their number one being anyone else's number two, can take respite in the rather different approach of Arsenal boss Joe Montemurro towards traditional goalkeeping roles.

“We’ve decided to have a bit more succession planning with our goalkeeping this season, we’re keeping Fran Stenson with us instead of sending her out on loan [she spent last season on loan at Blackburn], we believe Fran will be a top goalkeeper for Arsenal and for England for years to come," Montemurro told Arseblog.

“We’ve been strategic this year, so we have a very experienced goalkeeper in Lydia and she’s very experienced in big games. Manu is 24 and a bit younger, so she’s in that middle bracket in terms of age and then we’ve got Fran [19] coming up. So we’ve covered all areas, we’ve got the experienced goalkeeper who has big-game knowledge, we’ve got Manu, I won’t say she’s the ‘regular’ goalkeeper because we’re still going to rotate, but the long-term mainstay and then Fran emerging to challenge her.

“I haven’t met many goalkeepers that aren’t extroverted!” he laughs. “The personality of goalkeepers is something I really enjoy. It fits with the type of football we want to play, they are very involved in the build-up and you probably need to be a bit crazy and be prepared to take risks to play the way we play and Lydia and Manu really complement what we are trying to do.”