Melbourne Victory’s W-League team announced today that it will not be re-signing goalkeeper, Melissa Barbieri, for the upcoming W-League season, opting instead to name talented young shot-stopper Brianna Davey as the side’s first choice keeper.
Melbourne Victory-s W-League team announced today that it will not be re-signing goalkeeper, Melissa Barbieri, for the upcoming W-League season, opting instead to name talented young shot-stopper Brianna Davey as the side-s first choice keeper.
It was, says Melbourne Victory W-League head coach Vicki Linton, ‘a very difficult decision-, ironically made necessary by an abundance of talent which she says is an enormously positive sign for women-s football in Victoria.
“Victoria is very lucky in the talent we have here,” said Linton.
“We have a long history of producing world class goalkeepers, from FFA and FFV ‘Hall of Fame- inductee Theresa Deas, to Melissa Barbieri who has performed outstandingly for Melbourne Victory and the Matildas. I don-t think there-s any question that Brianna Davey has the talent to join that elite group in the very near future.”
Linton, who is also head coach of the Under 16 Women-s National Team, said that while Barbieri was still an outstanding keeper, she believed it was time for Davey to be given a chance at the top level.
“Melissa has been an amazing player at both State and National level, as well as an outstanding ambassador for the game,” said Linton.
“While letting any player go is difficult, we also have to do what we feel is the right thing for Melbourne Victory as a team. Going forward, we really believe it-s time for Brianna to step up to that ‘number one- position.”
Davey has represented Australia at Under 14 and Under 16 levels and is currently in the Young Matildas squad preparing for the Under 19 AFC Championships. She has been with the Melbourne Victory W-League squad since 2010.
“Brianna is an outstanding goalkeeper and, though she is still young at 16, plays well beyond her years and, importantly, has the potential to get even better as she matures,” Linton added.
“Anyone who has seen her play in the Under 16s, or who had the chance to see her play in the three W-League games she played for Victory last season at the age of only 15, will know what a talented and exciting player she is.”
In farewelling Barbieri, Linton said Victory was delighted to have had such a successful relationship with her.
“She has been an enormous asset to Victory and I am sure she will continue to make an outstanding contribution to the sport in the future and I wish her all the very best.” Linton said.