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Melbourne City lure Matildas legend Melissa Hudson out of retirement

Melissa Hudson
Melissa Hudson, nee Barbieri, has been capped 86 times for Australia.

Melbourne City have brought Matildas legend Melissa Hudson out of retirement, stocking up on goalkeeping quality to avoid another W-League debacle.

City head into Friday night's Melbourne derby off the back of a 4-1 routing by Sam Kerr's Perth Glory.

With first-choice goalkeeper Lydia Williams yet to link up with the squad, rotten luck hit City when second-choice custodian Emily Shields broke her wrist in the warm-up.

Coach Patrick Kisnorbo turned to third-choice goalkeeper Emily Kenshole, a highly-rated but untested 18-year-old.

Kenshole -- who saved a penalty from Matildas all-time leading scorer Lisa De Vanna in the Victorian league this year -- had a debut to forget, conceding four.

But in a quirk of fate, Kenshole has the two best mentors in Australian football at her disposal.

Hudson, who formerly played under her maiden name of Barbieri, was coaxed out of retirement by Kisnorbo as an injury replacement for Shields.

"I spoke to her in depth and said 'are you interested in coming back and giving it one more crack at the highest level' ... she accepted straight away," he said.

"It's happened in the last 24 hours and we're fortunate."

The 37-year-old Asian Cup-winning captain will deputise for Williams, who will start in Friday's derby, and fill in when she takes leave on Matildas duty next month.

Kisnorbo said the team had "drawn a line in the sand" after round one and were ready to fire -- especially given they lost the last derby.

"[The last derby] reminded me of last week's game," he said.

"We dominated and we got scored upon after 30 seconds and there was a cross that went into a goal.

"We'll get over it and face the next challenge and that's tomorrow's game."

In other round two matches, first-up winners Brisbane Roar and Perth Glory face off on Sunday afternoon.

Newcastle Jets can also make it two from two when they host Sydney FC in a third A-League double-header of the weekend.

The sole standalone game comes on Friday night at Marconi Stadium when Adelaide United begin their campaign away to Western Sydney.


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