AIS Women's Football - Melissa Barbieri
Born: January 1980
Named Captain of the Westfield Matildas in January 2010, Melissa is the most capped Goal Keeper in Australian Women's Football. Melissa started playing football at the age of eight in an all boys team in Melbourne, she was then banned from playing the year after but returned to the sport at 14. Melissa was an established field player after making the Australian Train On Squad as a 16 year old. In 2000 as a 20 year old, Melissa was overcome by an undiagnosed back injury that surgeons said could not be fixed, they also told her that she was no longer able to play football because of the running involved. Melissa didn't approve of that idea so she decided to stop running and become a goal keeper. After one year of goal keeping Melissa made the Australian team and in 2002 debuted with a clean sheet in Canada, against Canada. Melissa has strong communication and attributes her ability to read the game to playing on the field for so many years.
Questions & Answers
What is your most significant achievement in sport?
2010 Asian Cup Champions, qualification for Germany 2011 and being the most capped goal keeper in women's football. Quarter finals 2012 World Cup and Captaiin Australia.
What is your major sporting goal?
Continue to play top level football.
What keeps you busy outside sport?
Visiting family, watching movies and listening to my ipod