Lydia Williams is an Australian football player who is currently a goalkeeper for Arsenal and the Australia women’s National Team (Matildas). Lydia was born in Katanning, Western Australia, to a father of Aboriginal descent and an American mother. She spent most of her early years in Kalgoorlie, Western Australia, where she attended St Joseph’s Primary School. In 1999, her family moved to Canberra.
After playing junior football for Tuggeranong and Woden in the Australian Capital Territory, Lydia joined the Australian Institute of Sport Football Program. On 28 July 2005, at 17 years of age, she made her debut for the Matildas against Korea Republic in the Asia Tour in Jeonju.
She joined Australian W-League team Canberra United in 2008. In 2012, at 23 years of age, she signed her first contract overseas with Swedish football club Piteå IF. Sadly, after 2 months she tore her ACL.
In 2014, following a season-ending injury, the Western New York Flash signed Williams as their starting goalkeeper. She started 14 games in goal for them. She tore her ACL while participating in the 2014 AFC Women’s Asian Cup with the Australian Women’s National Team, which ended her NWSL season. After an intense rehabilitation period, she returned to the National Team to play in the 2015 World Cup.
In September 2014, Lydia was waived by NWSL and selected by Washington Spirit for their 2015 season. Since then, she has played for the Houston Dash, Melbourne City, Seattle Reign FC and Melbourne City. In the summer of 2020, Arsenal signed Lydia to be their goalkeeper.
In November 2019, Lydia published a children’s book, Saved!!!, which draws on her experiences growing up in the desert and achieving success as an Aboriginal female football player.